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.[calameo code=000390171873c910154bd lang=en page=106 hidelinks=1 width=100% height=500]