There’s notable prize money on offer should Celtic get a win against Feyenoord tomorrow.
There’s also the boost in co-efficient points it would bring.
As well as the minor credibility it would restore to our grim Champions League record.
The reality however is that many fans are finding it hard to get motivated in any meaningful way for a game where the end result means very little in the bigger picture.
Celtic Park will be busy tomorrow night, but it certainly won’t be full, and that’s what should cause most concern of all to the powers that be at Parkhead.
Sunday’s defeat by Kilmarnock – added to the European exit which was confirmed in Rome two weeks ago – has led to apathy amongst notable sections of the support.
And apathy is far worse than anger or frustration in this world.
When people stop caring, that’s when you have a problem.
Yes the Kilmarnock game was our first defeat in the league campaign so far, but it’s also the second time we’ve been defeated there following our League Cup exit in August.
Is that acceptable given the vast difference in resources between ourselves and the Ayrshire side?
Celtic have no god given right to win every game they play here in Scotland, but at the risk of coming across as entitled we must be expected to beat sides like Killie more often than not.
One out of three for the season so far against them doesn’t make for great reading.
The debates will rage on about why Celtic are just so inconsistent at this moment in time but for me it constantly comes back to the failings of our summer transfer window.
Instead of the nine projects that are currently busying up the training pitches up at Lennoxtown we’d have been far better served by signing just two players in the summer.
A goalkeeper and a left back.
This is no knee jerk reaction to the recent poor form of Joe Hart and Greg Taylor and is perhaps more indicative of the lack of viable alternatives when those two find themselves out of sorts.
Brendan Rodgers himself said in a recent interview that competition can sometimes be the best coach, but at this moment in time there’s simply no other choice but to go with Hart and Taylor.
Celtic have played 23 games in all competitions this season.
Taylor has started every one of those, whilst Hart has started all but one.
For players so glaringly out of form to be such a consistent part of the team tells you a lot about where Celtic are going wrong right now.
And whilst Brendan Rodgers should carry the burden for much of what we’re seeing – namely a lack of drive and desire in certain cases – he can’t be held responsible for not having the required tools to perform his job effectively.
We always knew the January window was going to be a crucial one, but with Rangers now inexplicably within touching distance at the top of the table then the importance has been ramped up even further.
In the meantime the manager and the players have a job to do to ensure we close out the calendar year as strongly as possible.
If we can make it to the New Year with our league lead in tact then regrouping and properly backing the manager properly must be the order of the day.
Otherwise tomorrow night won’t be the last time we see a less than full Celtic Park this season.
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