PO Box 306, Glasgow, G21 2AE, Scotland
so farewell then...
Oh dear, oh dear. What is there that can possibly said about this sorry episode?
When we were first linked with him no one knew who he was, just a young guy playing with Brighton, although on the up side Mark McGhee rated him.
The first sight of him brought just one thought – “He needs to lose some weight”.
Early season was a washout. He was brought on as an emergency forward at Ibrox as we lost to a Stuart Dougal inspired Orcs team.
He appeared the week after at East End Park and contrived to produce our one dodgy moment in an otherwise welcome 4-0 win when he ploughed into Mark Burchill to concede a penalty that the Holy Goalie mercifully saved.
After that he picked up an injury and didn’t reappear until the new year when he popped un in central defence as we went to Motherwell.
Given that our two previous visits there had seen us surrender the league trophy and then surrender a two goal lead (although we did manage to rescue that a bit by equalising) this was definitely seen as a pressure game. Hard though it may be to believe, Virgo was outstanding.
Motherwell fielded Jim Hamilton at centre forward, a player whose mantra was very much ‘Elbow first, ask questions later’. He was about to become very angry indeed (despite scoring the goal of the season with an unstoppable volley from the edge of the box).
Early in the second half with Celtic having taken the lead 2-1 (Virgo provided a nice chipped pass to Aiden McGeady who scored) Hamilton was on the stand side touchline waiting for the ball to come down. As it dropped he turned and when the ball was about 6-8 inches from the ground Mr Virgo arrived going full steam ahead. He caught the ball perfectly, but in the act of doing that happened to Panzer the bold Jim at the same time. The ref could do nothing, he had played the ball perfectly.
It happened again at the edge of the box and again Hamilton went bananas. This was not how central defenders played against him, he always had physical edge.
By the end of the game - final score 3-1 - the bold Jim was a very beaten (and very bruised) man.
For one brief moment it looked as though all that chat before he signed about being the new Roy Aitken might just have some substance (they even gave him the number 4!).
Alas it was not to be. That was Virgo’s one and only decent showing in the Hoops. The next time he played he was anonymous, except for the times when you noticed his poor touch.
He was loaned out to one of WGS’s old teams Coventry City, where he picked up a serious injury. Following that he had a loan spell at Colchester.
Recent pictures suggest he has actually gained weight.
He rejoins Brighton a considerably wealthier man, but one with a chip on his shoulder about how his time at Celtic went, his complaint being that he didn’t get a chance to show what he could do.
I would say that he did and sadly for him it just wasn’t up to the required standard. Who does he think he should have replaced? McManus? Caldwell?
The story that kind of sums up his time here comes from the evening after the 4-0 win in Dunfermline. One of NTV’s moles was hanging about the Celtic Superstore at the stadium. Virgo was there with some friends/family. They were buying a strip and decided to have Virgo put on the back. When the girl behind the counter asked what name they wanted one of the party (not Virgo himself) said “Can’t you guess?”.
Blank look from behind the counter along with the answer, “No”.
“Virgo”, came the reply as all eyes fell upon their host.
Alas, from behind the counter came the retort “Varga?”.
“No Virgo, Adam Virgo, him standing there, he was playing for the team today”.
“Really?” was the comment from behind the counter as one very embarrassed Virgo made for the exit, stage left.
We wish him well at Brighton. Honestly we do.