I can’t remember being so deflated after a Glasgow derby. Celtic’s performance against the Rangers on Saturday was terrible but tonight the players get a chance to put things right with the fans they let down at the weekend.
AC Milan is a massive challenge especially in an empty stadium when you compare the atmosphere that the Celtic fans created in the lashing rain when Scott McDonald scored a late goal to send us into the Glasgow night air, singing and dancing all the way to the Gallowgate for a celebration pint.
Ajer to AC Milan (yawn) has once again made the headlines with the Italians rolling into Glasgow with the forever young, Zlatan Ibrahimović.
AC Milan will have plenty of talent on show. I saw them earlier in the season against Shamrock Rovers in Dublin in this competition and Rovers put up a spirited performance and did not let themselves down but were outclassed in the end.
Neil Lennon will be still sick after Saturday, there has been talk of an unhappy dressing room. Hopefully it is only talk. I spoke to Rab Douglas on the Celtic Soul Podcast on Tuesday and he told me that Lenny is a winner and there is no better way to get over a bad defeat than a midweek game.
With another lockdown kicking in today, I have to admit I am losing the excitement I once had about these games. Normally I’d be in Glasgow from mid-afternoon soaking up the atmosphere in packed pubs before making my way to Celtic Park. Inside the park, the noise and song when the players would arrive on the pitch would only inspire the Celtic players. Tonight, they will have to look for inspiration elsewhere and hopefully I will lift myself from my slumber on the sofa to celebrate.
Lenny has been involved in many memorable European nights both as a player and manager and he will need a bit of luck tonight from the football gods. Performances have been below the standards we have witnessed in recent seasons, Covid-19 and injuries are also affecting team selection.
Tonight’s visitors are top of Serie A with 4 wins including a weekend 2-1 Milan derby win over Inter and will be the bookies favorite to take home the points. The TV merry go round continues tonight with BT Sport and Virgin Media showing the game and I’ll be back on the sofa for the 8pm kick off hoping and praying for an uplifting performance because if ever we needed a lift its now with all that’s going on around us.
Andrew Milne started More than 90 Minutes in 2001. He has written for numerous publications and online about Celtic. He is a former newspaper columnist with the Daily Ireland and the man behind celticfanzine.com. He is host of the Celtic Soul Podcast & Celtic AM pre-match events at Malone’s in Glasgow on match days and follows Celtic Home & Away. He is a season ticket holder for Celtic FC and the Republic of Ireland. He is also P.R.O. of St. Margaret’s CSC, a member of the Celtic Trust and the Celtic Graves Association.
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