RONNY DEILA will have to lead Celtic to only their fourth domestic treble in their history if he has to have any chance of being voted the Scottish Manager of the Year.

That’s the view of last season’s SFWA Player of the Year Kris Commons. However, the midfielder has warned it will be tough to better the manner in which the title was won in double-quick time last season.
Deila’s predecessor Neil Lennon had the championship in the bag by the end of March, with an emphatic win against tonight’s opponents, Partick Thistle, before going on to finish 29 points clear of Motherwell.

This time, it looks like going deep into the split before four-in-a-row can be celebrated.

And Commons has identified Inverness Caley Thistle – who the Hoops face in the Highlands on Saturday and again in the Scottish Cup semi-final the following weekend – as the main obstacle as they attempt to keep on track for a clean sweep of prizes.

He said: “I thought last season was the most convincing title win we have had. We had the clean sheet record, got over 100 goals and 99 points.

“So, it was pretty phenomenal and by this time it was done and dusted. That’s why it would be very, very hard to compare to that one.

“But we are still involved in the Scottish Cup and have won the League Cup, which makes it that little bit more special this season.

“It certainly takes it right down to the wire, if we can get past Caley Thistle in the semi-final.

“It’s Ronny’s first season and he’s still involved in going for three trophies at this late stage, which is brilliant.”

Commons trusts the pre-season programme being planned by Deila – without any of the exhausting travelling to Australia or the States for money-spinning friendlies – will offset the very short summer break before, he hopes, they are gearing up again for Champions League qualifiers.

He added: “I think they probably realise, from past mistakes, maybe, that we are not cattle. They treat us like professional footballers. Sometimes, the travelling is harder than the game itself.

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