The brunt of the blame might be falling on Neil Lennon’s shoulders right now, but his Celtic players are hardly doing him any favours.
The club are 23 points adrift of Rangers and it looks like their chances of winning ten in a row are completely dusted.
If Celtic supporters were able to attend Parkhead right now, you can imagine the atmosphere would be incredibly hostile. The hierarchy would have nowhere to hide and neither would the players. They’d be berated on a regular basis, especially the defence.
Odsonne Edouard has still been in the goals this term – racking up 12 strikes – but he’s not received much aid from the Hoops’ backline.
They conceded 19 goals in just six Europa League outings, being dumped out of Europe in desperate fashion. On top of that, the Bhoys have shipped 11 more league goals than Rangers in three fewer outings.
It’s a dismal record, one they simply have to improve in the back half of the campaign.
Celtic may have kept a clean sheet against Hamilton in midweek but when they face St Mirren on Saturday afternoon, they simply have to take Shane Duffy out of the starting XI.
When the centre-back signed on loan from Brighton at the start of the term it looked like a wise addition. After all, this was a fully-fledged international with English Premier League experience.
Though, for all of the expertise he possesses, he has been nothing short of a shambolic acquisition. Time and time again Duffy pops up with a mistake and certainly, in recent weeks, he has looked like a walking disaster.
The centre-back should have been sent off for a reckless challenge in his mini-cameo during the Old Firm derby, a moment that had supporters fuming with his display.
He was nervy during the Scottish Cup final as well, miscommunicating with Christopher Jullien which allowed Hearts to go clean through on goal.
Duffy was haphazard against AC Milan too, failing to get close enough to his markers and allowing easy goal-scoring opportunities.
He’s not only displeased supporters but he’s received plenty of criticism from pundits. Andy Halliday said last week: “He looks as if he’s got no confidence whatsoever, none. Obviously I wasn’t on for the last Old Firm game but he was on for about two minutes and the ball dropped to him and he tried to flick it away with the side of his foot. It’s like he has no confidence at all.”
There was an instance in the first-half where he fortunately got away with one. Duffy presented David Moyo with far too much time and space but he failed to find the net.
As a result, it’s time for the defender to be withdrawn from the XI. He is an accident waiting to happen and with a player as talented as Stephen Welsh on the bench, Lennon should look towards him on Saturday instead.
Duffy just isn’t good enough.