After the weekend we have just had in the capital, supporters will be hoping the party atmosphere will continue in Glasgow.
If you weren’t in Dublin last Saturday then it is safe to say you missed one hell of a party. Early on in the week flights and busses full of Celtic supporters began to arrive in the City center with Temple Bar becoming the meeting point for most.
There was a great buzz about the place. Dublin City always has been one of the party capitals of Europe but last weekend had another vibe to it altogether with the Irish tricolor quite literally hanging from every pub you walked past. It was clear Celtic were in town for more than just a football match.
As the supporters poured onto the cobbles of Temple Bar the songs continued right up until the early hours. The game was on paper – a friendly glamour tie and that’s exactly how the fans treated it. A packed out Aviva Stadium full of Celtic supporters, green and white dominating every corner. Last time Celtic played here they faced Liverpool and I think it’s fair to say the hoops were outnumbered, not this time though.
For the neutral it was great Celtic and Barcelona, Messi, Suarez and of course the brilliant Paddy Roberts I mean where else would you get it? The game finished 3-1 to the Catalan side and if nothing else proved to the world just how outstanding Barca really are. That’s not taking anything away from Celtic who held their own and even managed to capitalise on some really poor defending.
So now where does this leave us for the game today? I’m sure the last thing Brendan Rodgers wanted was a trip to Dublin right in between CL qualifiers, but it’s been and gone and we must now look at our chances against not the greatest side but one which will certainly keep us on our toes and fans possibly hiding behind hands for the full 90.
Last weeks game wasn’t that inspirational well in terms of the first half anyway. Celtic however up their gears in the second half and walked away from the game in Kazakhstan with an away goal, seeing the game finish 1-1.
In my opinion tonight game is one of the biggest in Celtic’s season, bow out of CL before even entering the group stages again and Celtic fans wont be happy and righty so. Rodgers is a man who is used to games like this and was drafted in for a reason.
When we think back to poor Ronny Delia who was sent packing at the start of the summer you have to agree with most fans that another go at CL qualifiers wasn’t something many felt was worth taking the risk on. Rodgers now has a set of lads in front of him that Delia had to work with – the exception of one or two changes so what can he do to improve things?
I am fairly confident Celtic can do the business this evening, but I certainly wouldn’t rule out Astana scoring. I don’t believe Celtic can afford to just sit back in this one.
Lets hope the party from the weekend can continue in Glasgow this evening!