Moneyball student of the game


The extent of Celtic’s pursuit of Ronny Deila can be seen from the fact that Peter Lawwell established a false identity before setting up a Norwegian football blog in early 2012 to allow him to pen this article titled, The Awesomeness of Ronny Deila.  There is a chance the blog wasn’t written by our CEO, but the appreciation of Ronny’s talent is clear.

No deal has been concluded, so it would be a mistake to get too worked up yet, but the fact that we have got to this stage clarifies where we are, and are not, looking.

Neil Lennon resigned two weeks ago and a whole series of names, most of whom are freely available and would be delighted to accept the Celtic job, have been hotly tipped by media and bookies alike.  Celtic will not be appointing the likes of Owen Coyle.  Suggestions, by many who like to knock the club, that they will make a dash for season ticket cash by big name are also wrong.

Roy Keane was a serious contender, wanted by some within the club.  He was in pole position a week ago, forcing those who only days earlier had proclaimed with great triumph that Neil resigned due to budget constraints (he didn’t) to re-write their script, but Roy had other plans.  As did some at Celtic.

The club have been busy looking for an intelligent, technically gifted, coach.  One who has a track record of innovation, improving players and improving teams.  Ronny will not sell tickets on the basis of his own identity, become none of us knew him, but it was absurd to suggest Celtic would look for a short term fix with enormous Champions League qualifiers looming a few weeks away.

By any measure Ronny is a student of the game, a “Moneyball” candidate, according to the above ‘Awesomeness’ article.  We don’t need the archetypal British shouter-manager, renowned for his inspirational abilities.  You can get the guy who puts the cones out to do the shouting.  We don’t need a media darling either.  Someone already alerted me to the fact that surely ‘Ronny brings it on himself’, whatever the media decide ‘it’ is, and the manager doesn’t need an Irish granny.

I’ve not seen too much of Lennoxtown but what I have seen is a campus with talented coaches, fitness experts, nutritionists, sports scientists, scouts and analysts.  We need a manager in tune with this approach to the game.  Someone who will dovetail with this infrastructure, who intuitively recognises its value without needing to be told.

These appointments are always a risk, but if we’re looking for someone to fulfil this criteria, we’ll do very well. I’ve yet to back a managerial appointment by our board in 10 years writing this stuff. This could be about to change.

Lladro replica World Cup trophy

My thanks to Liam, from East Kilbride, who donated his prize memento, a Lladro replica World Cup trophy, commissioned by the Spanish FA in 1978, and acquired by Liam in 1982.  It will be auctioned on Saturday with proceeds going to our Mary’s Meals school kitchen appeal.  You can get involved in the auction, or keep an eye on it as it happens, here.  The auction takes place at Great Western Auctions, on Dumbarton Road.

Visit the CQN Bookstore to get Tommy Gemmell to sign your personal copy of his tome, All the Best.

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  1. NatKnow




    12:24 on 5 June, 2014




    setting free the bears supports Res. 12 & Oscar Knox



    12:12 on 5 June, 2014



    In my opinion, only two guys are overpaid at our club.



    Peter Lawwell, for running a middling sized company.



    And Bo Derek Rigter for not running.




    Peter Lawwell is overpaid based on the criterion of PLC turnover? Compared to what all other companies in the UK? Or to other football PLCs with similar turnover?

  2. The Battered Bunnet on




    I’m intrigued as to who the two other similar profile candidates are. Any suggestions? Just that the media need something for tomorrow’s back page.




  3. Has the look of some white-ish smoke AND a nod of a blessing from P67!



    Freely admit I hadn’t heard of this gent prior to yesterday but he’s def the type I want us to go for.



    And if Johannsen’s intelligent look, receive the ball, look, pass, look, run, look routine is anything to go by, then he could have us playing the Celtic Way.



    HH jamesgang

  4. traditionalist88 on

    You can get the guy who puts the cones out to do the shouting







    Shouting will be the least of our problems if he brings his current assistant. Allegedly.




  5. From previous:







    I realise you’re after a PC, however, can I suggest the i-pad. It’s an absolutely brilliant piece of kit. Perfect for browsing and all other computing chores. Only down-side, no facility for adding on externals. Possibly the best purchase I’ve ever made.



    Well, I suppose I dont really buy a lot of things!






    End London rule. Vote YES

  6. “Celtic will not be appointing the likes of Owen Coyle”


    Best quote I’ve read in weeks.


    And put with authority and confidence.


    ABC campaign wins

  7. I wonder how some of you guys would cope with an ‘ofsted’ of your working practices?

  8. The Battered Bunnet on




    That could be construed as pretty disrespectful in addition to being snide.



    Is that – disrespectful and snide – what you wanted us to infer?

  9. The Battered Bunnet



    12:30 on 5 June, 2014



    Would it be true though?



    Or does that not matter to you?

  10. iPaddy McCourt on

    Get Ronny signed up and let’s embrace an intriguing and potentially excellent new chapter.

  11. Hamiltontim is praying for Oscar


    10:35 on


    5 June, 2014


    Is it safe?



    Ps I’m on my break!!






    eh izzit no callt playtime anymerr? :-))



    When did it change? i demand tae no lol



    just askin as am in the dinshy Q




  12. My family are all, professors, university lecturers, teachers, lawyers, judges, doctors, news readers, journalists and chartered accountants.






    I was the apple that fell far, far, far away from the tree but,


    whilst all my clever-clogs relatives were having their bahookys


    heated on the heated seats at CP etc…..I was happiest being educated


    in/by the Jungle at CP.



    On conclusion…my snooty relatives have never lived the dream that I did.



    Walk-on in the rain at Hampdump or, getting yer backside heated on the seats?



    Guess what box I ticked?



    Guess which parts of the above are true?



    Get yer answers the morra – Off oot – bye Tims.

  13. The Battered Bunnet on




    It doesn’t matter to me if it’s true – that you’re disrespectful and snide – but it may matter to you.

  14. Paul, interesting times.



    A cautionary note about ‘money ball’……



    Value comes in many forms, not only in the young player, whose potential is not yet clear, who can be sold on in a couple of years.



    Value can come in the form of an older player, with no resale value, but whose value to the team can outstrip the cost of bringing him in.



    Or the solid, decent player who plays most of his career at the club, and whose experience and leadership help the other younger players.



    Celtic seem to be very much focused on the ‘quick profit’ version.



    For ‘money ball’ to work, you don’t need to make a big profit on every player. You need to look at the entire portfolio. And you need to look at it over the cycle.



    Celtic will have no choice but to sell FF and VVD. They will tell us that they have no intention of signing a contract extension. At that moment, their value will have peaked, and they will be off for the best deal that the club can get.



    It is where Celtic DO have a choice that matters.



    ‘Money ball’ will only work if there is room:


    a). to sign a Lubo; and



    b). to sign a long term extension for the likes of Scot Brown.



    Sometimes, it is not clear to me that we are working towards that bigger picture.



    Here’s hoping……

  15. ernie lynch



    12:27 on 5 June, 2014



    Well at least we know what Peter Lawwell wants us to think.




    If only we did!



    The hard problem of consciousness and privileged access would be solved.

  16. Paul67



    Maybes Pedro didn’t write the artical you refer to in your piece, but he may have had a helping hand in your leader today >}




  17. inchture bhoy aka neil lennon on

    Reading some of the quotes and comments on here yesterday made me extremely glad that I was not the posters of these remarks.



    The negativity surrounding some peoples opinion of what is happening and what is likely to happen at Celtic Park is astounding.



    Time some of you starting taking medication to get you out of your permanently negative state of mind.



    It must be terrible having to go around like this.

  18. TBB – I have it under excellent authority that the other 2 candidates are Jimmy Calderwood and Archie Knox

  19. Someone to “dovetail with the infrastructure”!



    But do we need change from ‘root to branch’ and possession of the ability to ‘blue sky think’ hopefully ‘outside the box’?




  20. traditionalist88 on

    Celtic consider Deila Sky Sports 12:09


    Give him a chance Sky Sports 11:56


    Celtic manager search continues Sky Sports 11:39


    Deila flattered by Celtic link Sky Sports 11:12






    A cursory glance at newsnow brought up the above articles all of which appeared within the last hour.



    They know who the big clubs are.



    Andy Walker thinks we should give it to his pal Owen Coyle. Clown.




  21. kevinlasvegas on

    inchture bhoy aka neil lennon



    That’s the reason i lurk more often than post now, Used to post a lot until the venom came out over the GB and sevco panto, If you don’t agree your a bun.



    So now i just lurk.



    Get Ronnie in for me as well. I think he has something about him.




  22. tommytwiststommyturns on

    TBB – I think Paul already got his retaliation in, in the first paragraph! :-)


    It’s all a smokescreen anyway…Steven Pressley has it nailed !



    Jonny – what PC do you run iTunes on?! :-)




  23. traditionalist88 on

    wee ron: ‘Value can come in the form of an older player, with no resale value, but whose value to the team can outstrip the cost of bringing him in.’





    Spot on. Getting to the stage where we sign some over 26 and there is mock outrage from some.



    Experience can often be the difference in tight games.



    And then theres Lubo…




  24. Re tactics, Neil’s use of a rotating front 3 (Anthony, Leigh and Kris ) with Antony and Kris split with Kris lying deep , took a bit of getting used to, however it does make it difficult for very deep lying defences to shackle our front men.



    I guess this is the main tactical challenge is finding a way of playing , week in , week out which can be more readily transferred to the CL.



    A very open , all out attacking more will see us battered against the very top sides , we need more players in midfield with a better first touch and movement




  25. inchture bhoy aka neil lennon on

    kevinlasvegas, I normally only lurk but it is becoming ridiculous. People are writing this guy off without knowing anything about him, when all the pointers out there are suggesting that he could possibly be exactly what is required.



    The facts are overlooked and replaced by either a) he is the cheap option or b) he is only being considered as he will do exactly what Peter Lawell wants him to do without question.



    Back to lurking and happy land for me.

  26. Moonbeams WD. Wee Oscar’s our Bhoy and Kano’s our mhan.




    12:42 on 5 June, 2014







    As well as overpaid Peter Lawell is also over empowered!



    MWD says AYE




    How so? hat powers does he have that he shouldn’t have?



    And why do you say he is overpaid?

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