You can take a bhoy out of Cardiff but you can’t take Cardiff out of Joe Ledley.
Eight months after a hostile departure from his home town club the Celtic midfielder is thriving in Glasgow and enjoying the success of Cardiff City from a distance.
Last Sunday Ledley turned in another commanding performance in the Glasgow derby ahead of Cardiff’s Craig Bellamy inspired win at Swansea.
Unless Cardiff and Swansea meet in the play-off’s they won’t face each other again this season and if one club is promoted to the Premiership there will be no Welsh derbies next season.
Ledley has no such problems in Glasgow and despite being suspended from the Scottish Cup replay with Rangers will have another three derbies to enjoy before the season is out.
Last Sunday Neil Lennon jokingly described seven derbies in a season as torture but like his fellow new bhoys at Celtc Ledley just can’t get enough of these ‘unique’ occasions.
“The Old Firm games are the ones you want to play in all the time,” the midfielder admitted. “Ask the current Cardiff City players whether they want to play Swansea seven times in a season and I know the answer you’ll get! That atmosphere is what you crave as a footballer.”
“When we went into our pre-match huddle on Sunday I couldn’t hear a single word my teammates were saying. There was just noise.”
If Ledley had taken up any of the other options he would still be in his probationary period being given time to settle in and find his feet in new surroundings. Not so in Glasgow.
Instant results are expected and anyone falling short won’t be around long enough to make amends.
Ledley was a virtual ever-present in Lennon’s new look Celtic side with his tidy early season performances transformed in the new year as Celtic hit form.
The very definition of a defence splitting pass set up Georgios Samaras to score against Rangers on January 2 with the Welshman revelling in the new look Celtic midfield that has accompanied Kris Commons arrival.
“I’ve been given a lot of responsibility here by Neil Lennon and it’s helped me to develop more as a player and as a person,” he added.
“We have to win the treble. It’s as simple as that round here. We were disappointed with our Champions League showing and we need to win the league and the Cups to make up for that.
“It’s just great to be playing in a team that keeps on winning. That’s what its all about here, the bar is high and I’m enjoying pushing myself to reach it every week.
“I feel confident and hopeful that we can win the treble. That’s the goal for me and for this team.”