There is a striking symmetry in the English Premier League. None of the 10 clubs in the top half has an English manager, whereas only two clubs in the bottom half of the table have non-English managers. For all its apparent self-importance, the English game is keen to learn from Europe.
The likes of Sam Allardyce, Steve Bruce and Roy Hodgson are still getting a gig, although I cannot understand why. Graham Potter took over at Premiership Brighton two years ago and has kept them there since. Sean Dyche also keeps Burnley away from the trapdoor.
The England national team has a native manager, although one who took over at top flight Middlesbrough before changing their status to a Championship club., his only prior managerial experience. The top English manager today is sitting at home on the south coast waiting for his next appointment.
News leaked that Eddie Howe spoke to Celtic four weeks ago. A week later his agent sent out the clarion call to prospective employers. Newcastle, Southampton and Crystal Palace will all remain in the top flight and could replace their manager, Everton, who Howe supports, may lose Carlo Ancelotti, despite his £12m salary.
You know the script, players, agents and even managers talk-the-talk but if they have a pen in their hand and are about to sign your contract when get a text message from a club paying £12m-a-year, they will want to check a few details over.
I know the managerial appointment is taking longer than Celtic wanted. “The clock is ticking” for a club with enormous rebuilding plans ahead. A desire to make the right appointment will soon conflict with a desire to make the appointment at a time that allows the new manager to make a success of the job.
The month of May is a hard deadline, candidates have been told it’s time to get off the pot. No deal is done, but there will hopefully not be long to wait.