Chick Young on Celtic's potential Rugby Park title win

By Chick YoungBBC Scotland football pundit
Kilmarnock beat Celtic in the Scottish Communities League Cup final
Kilmarnock beat Celtic in the Scottish Communities League Cup final

It's in the stars. It must be. That Kilmarnock-Celtic thing. Fate has linked Ayrshire and Glasgow this season as assuredly as the M77.

Neil Lennon was just 45 minutes from being slipped his P45 when the teams shoe-horned themselves back up the narrowest tunnel in the game on 15 October: Kilmarnock 3-0 up at half time, the Parkhead board surely ready to call him a taxi.

And actually, sections of the Celtic support calling him much worse.

Then came that skin-saving second-half comeback.

But, six months later, he stands on the threshold of his first championship as a coach and the high jinks, would you believe it, are scheduled for Rugby Park.

And it could have been the second instalment of a Treble had it not been for, eh, Kilmarnock in the Scottish Communities League Cup final.

It's a funny old game right enough.

Celtic came from behind to draw 3-3 with Kilmarnock in October
Celtic came from behind to draw 3-3 with Kilmarnock in October

Tainted title? Not for me. If you can't see that Celtic are the best team in the land - and simple arithmetic will show you that Rangers' 10-point deduction was an irrelevance in the destination of the championship - then get yourself a guide dog.

So let's make that clear in a season where we should maybe have turned the cameras round to cover the action in the boardrooms.

If walls have ears then we're talking African elephant in the room at the top of the Ibrox staircase. They could tell you tales of intrigue the likes of which have never been heard in all the history of our game.

And St Mirren. The takeover bid by Ken McGeoch and Paul Davies is being swatted away by the consortium that own the club as he is accused of being in association with Rangers secretary Gary Withey. Is nothing straightforward any more?

It would be some viewing, from the civil war in Paisley to the financial jiggery pokery up the M8 and moments of grief as other clubs watched crowds evaporate, grandstands close and some tried to take a sledgehammer to a voting structure that they view as a dictatorship.

Scottish football, it seems, is in a distressed state, with the Scottish Premier League board even telling the rebel 10 to back off that vote debate because it is harming the chances of doing deals with sponsors and broadcasters.

One day soon, you will not be able to differentiate BBC Scotland's Sportsound from the Politics Show.

So, while others select the self-destruct button, Celtic have got on with it on the park.

A wee spring stutter notwithstanding, they have been miles better than anyone else and that, when all is said and done, is what they are asked to do at the season's infancy.

Kyle Lafferty apparently disagrees. The Rangers striker's entitled to, of course, but I wonder what colour grass is on his planet.

Good enough for Scotland and yet the Celtic I've seen recently, as they shine up the SPL trophy, will need to polish up their act for Europe.

I tend to cough nervously as I watch the Champions League and the business end of the Europa League and think of the Scottish challenge next season.

But they won't have time to reflect on that for the meantime as the Champagne flows down in Ayrshire.

Unless, just one more time, Kimarnock have other plans.