An article in the Athletic has sparked a lot of debate on Monday morning surrounding James McCarthy and his place in this Celtic side.

The author of the article Kieran Devlin is a reputable source; a Celtic fan with no agenda who has good sources when it comes to Celtic.

For those of you who haven’t read the article, Kieran spoke about James struggling in Ange’s system and finding it difficult to reach the levels needed in training to match the intensity of others in the team. [The Athletic]

The blog also reveals Ange and the scouting system in place at Celtic didn’t have much to do with the signing of James on a four-year deal. It was down to higher ups bringing the midfielder into the club.

I’d like to offer a defence of James.

The player was training on his own after leaving Crystal Palace at the end of last season. Then, shortly after coming into the club, the player contracted the virus and was out the game for around 16 days. The setback put his training and general fitness on hold.

Ange is asking a lot from his players and rightly so, however, it’s not an overnight thing and players are clicking at different times.

Against Livingston, James, like many others in the side were anonymous. However, it was just the Irish international’s first start for the club. Given the perspective provided above, anyone writing him off this early shouldn’t be taken seriously.

James should also not be punished because someone in the Celtic hierarchy *cough cough* Dermot, chose to bring him into the club with little influence from the people paid to make these sorts of decisions.

We don’t know if James can be a success at Celtic under Ange but it’s just too early to tell at this point. The lad needs games and Ange will have an arm around him.

The Celtic manager has proven to be an excellent man manager and will give the former Everton man the time to adapt. Callum McGregor coming back into the fold from injury will take the burden off James and hopefully he can kick on from there.


  1. James to blame, ma arse. Celtic even with Kyogo, are mostly walking wounded. It’s time to hit the park clicking and connecting with each others defaults. Only way is up. Sevco are not immune either. So no pointing elbows please. Share the pain, move on together.


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