Celtic team 'had more than enough' but 'no clear strategy' leaving BBC pundit puzzled

Michael Stewart was left confused by Celtic’s performance against Livingston – despite stand-in coach Gavin Strachan’s limited selection options.
Michael Stewart (Photo by Ross MacDonald/SNS Group)Michael Stewart (Photo by Ross MacDonald/SNS Group)
Michael Stewart (Photo by Ross MacDonald/SNS Group)

The Hoops’ side was without 13 first-team players in self-isolation, but still included internationals Shane Duffy, Nir Bitton and Diego Laxalt, plus seasoned SPFL players like Calum McGregor and David Turnbull, yet failed to threaten Livingston at Celtic Park.

Australian capped midfielder Tom Rogic was repurposed as a centre-forward – but the gamble did not pay off and the home side couldn’t find the answers to break down the West Lothian side – though it did deny them a ninth consecutive win, with Josh Mullin hitting the crossbar in the second half.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

And though they cured their selection headache to establish a 4-2-3-1 formation – the match strategy didn’t do enough to find answers to earn the three points.

Celtic coach Gavin Strachan. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)Celtic coach Gavin Strachan. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)
Celtic coach Gavin Strachan. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)

“What was Celtic’s gameplan?” asked Stewart, “it was not obvious”.

“There should be more than enough for them to pull together a team who can cause problems at home against Livingston, but they didn't look as if they were able to do that.

“Tom Rogic is playing up front and we know he's not a striker so you've got to find another way to skin the cat.

“It didn't look to me like Celtic had any real game plan on how they were going to hurt Livingston and it just petered out. There was no strategy.

“Confidence can be low but that means you have to emphasise even more what you are trying to do and it just wasn't obvious.”

Celtic are expected to have improved selection options when they face Livingston again on Wednesday night.

A message from the Editor:Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers.If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.