Celtic supporters have been making all the noise in the Transfer Tavern in the last few hours after seeing their side win the Old Firm derby at Parkhead on Sunday.
Brendan Rodgers’ men went into their meeting with bitter rivals Rangers off the back of progressing through into the group stages of the Europa League, but otherwise having endured a testing start to the 2018/19 season. Yet the Bhoys produced a dominant display at Celtic Park at the weekend to get past Steven Gerrard’s resurgent Gers, with Olivier Ntcham’s strike just after the hour mark proving to be enough to seal all three points for the Scottish Premiership champions.
Thus, there have been many thrilled and jubilant Celtic fans up and down the country in recent times, several of whom are likely to be intrigued by recent comments from BBC Sportscene pundit Michael Stewart, who suggests that the Old Firm victory will have a ‘bigger impact on Celtic than it will on Rangers’.
And while Gerrard’s Light Blues are likely to be disappointed in not being able to record their first win over their rivals since 2012, Stewart is absolutely right to suggest that victory on Sunday was massive for manager Rodgers and his side.
Ultimately, it has been a testing few months for the ex-Liverpool boss at Parkhead in being unable to significantly improve his squad during the transfer window, bringing in just six players in the end – two of which on deadline day, as well as seeing star striker Moussa Dembele leave the club in the last knockings of the window.
Add in the situation surrounding Dedryck Boyata, who reportedly refused to play for the club earlier this month following the break down of his move to Fulham, and things have been particularly tough off the pitch for the Bhoys chief – yet things on the pitch haven’t been plain sailing either.
Celtic failed to qualify for the Champions League for the first time under Rodgers’ stewardship in losing in the third qualifying round to AEK Athens, and while they have managed to get into the group stages of the Europa League, that will surely be of huge disappointment to the Bhoys boss.
As such, there would likely have been many Rangers fans who sensed an opportunity to beat Celtic for the first time since 2012 on Sunday such have been the difficulties on and off the pitch in recent times, which is why beating the Gers was massive for Rodgers and his team.
Overall, the Bhoys were comfortably the better team and a 1-0 scoreline somewhat flatters Gerrard’s Rangers, who had the woodwork and goalkeeper Allan McGregor to thank for staying in the game – it was exactly the sort of performance Celtic needed after a few testing months.
In winning the game, they have now opened up a five-point lead over their Old Firm rivals and are up to second in the division – add in qualification for the Europa League group stages, and things are suddenly looking a lot more positive for the Scottish giants.
Thus, Stewart is absolutely right to suggest that Sunday’s win was massive for Celtic and manager Rodgers, as defeat would have left the Bhoys facing some tricky questions such has been their testing start to the new season.
Celtic fans… what do you think? Let us know!