Identifying Our Coaching Targets


Today brings you all a guest article from REBUS67,which will give us all a break from my recent negativity.

How did Celtic go about isolating the targets for the Manager/Coach position? Identifying candidates for coaching positions seems to involve one or more of the following.
1. Reputation, either as a coach or as a player. Gerrard is a good example of evaluating a candidate based upon his playing record. John Barnes is a more relevant example that illustrates the risks of using this approach.
2. Did the candidate coach a team that has played us and, perhaps, has beaten us? BR was impressed with Jack Ross’ teams when they played us. His name has floated around the Celtic position but the need for a high profile appointment probably deep sixed his chances. Sparta Prague gave us a doing, home and away. Was any consideration given to the current coach, Pavel Vrba, or even his predecessor, Vaclav Kotal? Similarly, was the coach of Copenhagen sounded out? Somehow I doubt it.
3. Former coaches can identify targets. I suspect at least some of Strachan, MON, or BR was asked for their views.
4. Professional agencies can be used to both identify and assess candidates. Some agencies specialise in the football industry. There is no shortage.
5. Finally, the most important criterion is Track Record, particularly, recent track record. Coaches such as Mourinho peak and then their most recent track records show decline, as at Chelsea and ManU.
The next step in the recruitment process is to figure out the club’s priorities. Is it to develop youth players with the intent of selling them on? Is it to avoid relegation? Is it to win back the league? Is it to improve performance in Europe?
Some managers are good at fighting relegation, others, whilst good managers, cannot deal with that kind of pressure. Others are good at improving the performance of teams that have limited budgets but then have difficulty buying top players that can improve the club. Howe probably fell into this category.
Then there is the tactical style preferred by the candidate and whether we have the players to adopt that style. For Celtic this is a moot point since half of the team are likely to be gone by the time that a manger arrives. However, related to this is the available budget. Can Celtic fund the tactical style of the candidate?
Currently, Postecoglou favours a 433 defending style with an intense press. For example, Rogic does not fit into that style. Christie is the nearest to the type of player required and he wants to leave. So, apart from any other area, the Postman will need to strengthen the midfield with probably two energetic players. He has used other systems in the past but all of them use the press and a system of rotating players in and out of this press. I doubt that we currently have enough of that type of player. Ferguson at Aberdeen would be a candidate.
Another aspect that is assessed is the personality of the candidate. Will he fit within the club and within Scottish football in general? BR was the perfect example of a personality that quickly dominated Scottish football and the associated media. He and PL are also examples of a class of personalities that, ultimately, was a negative for the club. Lennon Mark 2 was the counter example who managed to alienate virtually every sector of the industry…fans, senior management, players, refs. There may be very good reasons why this happened but it was the reality.
Postecoglou is reported to have a no nonsense approach to players and the media. Can he put the negative media back in its box? It would be a tall order to do that as well as resurrect a failing team. Chances are he will alienate the media, but is that not already the case?
There are many other factors that have to be considered but let me finish on one that is important to the future of the club. Can the candidate develop young players? Here Postecoglou seems to have a good track record. With the Australian national team he seems to have culled the old guard and brought in promising youngsters. He did this as well with the Australian clubs that he managed. It is more difficult to judge if he did this for Yokohama. He has a squad of 30 and 20 of them are over 25.Hopefully, he was quizzed on this aspect during interview.
In trolling through the recruitment literature, it seems there is one aspect that stands out in successful recruitment. The first thing to realise in the process is scope. It is important to start with the net spread as widely as possible. We have seen the folly of not doing this with the “Shower” appointment of NL. Limiting ourselves to “Celtic minded” or Irish connected candidates only makes the process harder and more likely to result in a shallow pool. Similarly, relying too heavily on the City connection has the same effect.
A better starting point in recruitment is to ask what do we want the club to be known for in its style of play? Do we have a particular style of play that we want to develop from youth to first team? Having decided that, go and look for candidates that have that in their track record. BR is one who understood this but there are many others.
Perish the thought, but we could even write in a playing style clause into the coach’s contract! Failure to deliver that could result in termination.
Above article by REBUS67,with grateful thanks.

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June 7, 2021 7:42 am

It doesn’t matter what the coach’s style or tactics he uses it’s his man mangement that counts , if the players are not convinced he knows what he is doing or can improve them he will not be successful . It’s a team game and that means management, coaches, players and yes supporters all in it together. BR had the coachs and players on the same wavelength but latterly it looks like not the Board,
another example is Chelsea , obviously the new guy came in and got the players onside and had them all paddling in unison. Man management for me is the number 1 criteria , we hear it constantly from players about good coaching. Everyone knows what they are supposed to be doing when they go on the park they have clear instructions , not asked to do what they are not capable of doing
Can you imagine if our team was coached on how to deal with crossed balls this season, if successful the confidence could have lifted the whole team
There was a guy here in Vancouver he coached , Lacrosse, Soccer, and Basketball at University Level. He was very successful in all his coaching fields, when he passed away the number of Professional athletes who got up to speak about him was staggering, they all broke his coaching down to doing the small things properly and treating everyone with respect, and he obviously earned their respect
If the new guy gaines the players respect they will run through walls for him.

Cosy Corner Bhoy
June 7, 2021 8:27 am

Next to nothing known by me about our new coach/manager, even ‘ Is he the new manager for sure ‘ ?
Rebus gives me a very small ray of hope! As with all managers appointed by the club, the second coming of NFL excepted, I will be supporting him from the beginning. In all the managers I’ve seen appointed, which is more than ones I haven’t, he really does come with a clean slate. Other than knowing nothing about him, what could I possibly hold against him!
Given the extremely poor pool of players he is inheriting, he is starting from way back,and, having Dumb and Dumber as his ‘ appointed’ assistants , will mean he is handcuffed to two dummies! I really do hope he brings an assistant coach with him. At least he will know the man and his, the Postman cf Rebus, methods,
I wish him the very best.
I’ve still got some Holy Water left from our Lisbon visit in 2017 if he needs it, although I might need it myself after a few games😁!

June 7, 2021 8:33 am

Good Morning all.

Thank you Rebus for a fine lead article, which encapsulates many of the critical factors that should be addressed in the current situation ( and not only then, but continuously). Of course, application of those principles is another matter entirely – but nevertheless they need to be set out anyway.

The Tic also focuses on a vital ingredient: management. BTW, I dislike the term “man management ” – management is management is management, if you get my drift. I agree, therefore, that it is crucial to identify the correct individual who has a track record of implementing this essential skill.

Not so sunny thus far by the Silvery Tay.


Maestro Fan
June 7, 2021 8:36 am

Sorry, but we’re going down the tubes for the foreseeable. The level of negligence at Parkhead is incredible, as is the absence of self-insight (Lennon blaming fans, Desmond wanting Lawwell to remain as Chairman).

They are in the process of asset stripping the squad. They are do8bling down on the pursuit of profit, cashing in on a fire sale.

Yes men dumplings Kennedy and Strachan will remain in situ. They’re bringing in a panic appointment manager with zero lead-in time for him to acquaint himself with his new football environment. It’s an utter disaster after a season of disaster, all unnecessary and self-inflicted,

The Board is chummy, negligent and way out of its time. Ascribing a bowling club committee mentality to it would be too generous.

St tams
June 7, 2021 9:24 am

Spoke to my mate in Melbourne yesterday.
He played against Ange quite a bit and knows him well.
Says he is a really good coach with a set way he wants the team to play. Also says he is poor in front of the media and literally no personality.

A thing of beauty
June 7, 2021 9:40 am

Thanks for the reply last night.
St Tams,
I am not impressed that we are giving this guy the job from the point of view that he will have next to no preparation and will have to rebuild the poorest squad I remember any celtic coach inheriting. It’s rank bad planning and maestro is correct to say that there are better run bowling committees. But and there is always a but to justify why I would go along with this and that is from all accounts on podcasts and print he is an absolute football maniac and we need someone like him. Players seem to take to his methods and if they don’t they’re out the door. So it’s back to Ronnie deila who did a lot and had good ideas but not the gravitas to carry them off. I hope Ange has better success and is backed more by the senior pros. I think he will be. We have good pros at celtic who want to be coached and want a game plan. They’ll get it from
postecoglu and let’s hope they can implement it. Howe is gone and we need to move on. Lawwell should have made this move 2 months ago but hey ho just another shit show from The king of the shit show.

June 7, 2021 9:50 am

Good morning from a sunny Blackpool.
Great article Rebus.
Having done intensive research on the man. I think Ange Postecoglou is the ideal manager for Celtic just now. I will be delighted with this appointment. Happy days ahead with this guy. 👍

June 7, 2021 10:00 am

From last night.
Your personal attack on 3 people who I like and respect, says more about you than it does about BMCUW, CCB & ATOB.
You are just a wee keyboard warrior who is needing (rest of comment deleted)

June 7, 2021 10:09 am

Morning all & Packy.

Great article Rebus.

Say hello to Blackpool for me Garry. Hope you have a right good break. 🙂

cosy corner bhoy
June 7, 2021 10:16 am

Thanks for the offer Garry!
Think you’ll have to get in line!!!
Paddy’s Maw no happy is akin to Purgatory for the recipient ! He left her out

June 7, 2021 10:48 am

Blackpool has been a great break. Brilliant weekend in the sun.

June 7, 2021 10:51 am

Was enraged reading back what that prick posted last night. Personal attacks is not on.

June 7, 2021 10:57 am

Rebus 67
Thought provoking.

There is the preferred Celtic alternative of taking the names of everyone who applies and some who don’t and sticking them in a hat.
Lawwell the liar could then pick out names until he finds a candidate he and DD agree on.
This recruitment lark is simple.
Much better than taking qualifications into account.

Big Audio Dynamite
June 7, 2021 10:59 am

A 55yo who has never managed a single big club in his whole career is now the manager for us!?

Don’t think we are done falling yet!

June 7, 2021 11:03 am


Big Audio Dynamite
June 7, 2021 11:07 am

Oh it’s cool, he’s bringing Kevin Muscat with him! All our worries are over …yay!

June 7, 2021 11:40 am


Nothing wrong with your sentiments but I slightly edited the wording!

As COSYCORNERBHOY suggested,it isn’t his three named targets he should be concerned about,but the one he left out.

She Who Must Be Obeyed!!!

June 7, 2021 11:53 am

All cool BMCUW. 👍

June 7, 2021 12:02 pm

My concerns about the current leading candidate is that his career statistics suggest that it takes him a year to find success. I doubt that he will be given that grace, at least by the fans. Losing the league in the upcoming season will be a financial disaster for us and a tremendous boost to our rivals. By the time that he gets his team going, the league may be lost, unless Sevco implode due to unforeseen circumstances.

The positive is that AP has a plan of how he wants his team to play. You can see the squad rebuild as an opportunity to get the players he needs. Alternatively, you could view it as a serious impediment to him implementing his style, given that he knows little about the European game, far less the Scottish one. Time will tell.

Frankly, the lack of a licence suggests to me that due diligence was not conducted by the Board and that there is an element of panic about this appointment.

More turbulent, trying times await, I am afraid. Now is the time for a BR type appointment not a gamble who has little knowledge of the playing resources that are available. Still, if Ange gets his Celtic team playing his way, it will be exciting.


June 7, 2021 12:08 pm

It is 7.00 am here so I am away back for a sleep.


June 7, 2021 1:09 pm


This impending appointment is a HUGE gamble by our club-or rather,the people in control of it. And quite frankly,the last time to gamble is in a high stakes game when you are on your uppers and the last opponent in town holds the aces and has the initiative.

(I’m already planning similar to this for my next article,btw!)

Our planning for most of the last two decades has been undone by tinkering at the edges,trying to prove how clever we can be and screwing it all up in the last lap. We now face an opponent primed to win a second title in a row-at least!-with guaranteed access annually to a £40m crock of gold.

Meanwhile,we are a crock of shit.

That £40m should be ours,and would be had our “superiors” done their job. Now they leave us with an £80m turnover differential per annum.

In the Scottish game that is enough for a club to really consider a Generation of Domination. And rest assured,the only attention they will be paying to us will be to ensure that we are kept firmly in our place.

All those years that we had the chance to do the same to them squandered on the altar of the vanity of one man.

June 7, 2021 1:39 pm


Your comments about CL money heading to Ibrox to give them dominance for a foreseeable future that Celtic have enjoyed got me wondering.

Why dont Celtic front load the equivalent of 2 years CL income on basis it will buy players of the quality in Roger’s time to win access to CL by winning the title with no risk of failing to reach group stages as winners?

I’m not a betting man but if such front loading gave us 2 years entry then why not a third which would be profit assuming same squad more or less contracted for 3 years.

The downside might be our main rivals might be sunk without trace competitively and perhaps administratively as result of current debt.

Given all that Celtic have done to protect our nearest rivals going bust, the very idea that would have been unthinkable in 2009 (bar a few including Aw Naw and Mags) can no longer be dismissed as preposterous.

I guess what I am saying is that the dreaded scenario we fear is totally avoidable if Celtic stop gaf about any negative impact of our policy on them.

June 7, 2021 2:09 pm


Frontloading is exactly what was needed in 2000 when MON arrived. Back then,we had lost the league by nearly as many points as last season.

It certainly worked!

There are though a number of differences between then and now. Not least that we could still buy near the top of the market,and that the new manager was highly respected,which made the club attractive to those players.

But the biggest one is probably that there was actually a very good squad of players already there.

Our new manager,whoever and whenever he is announced,will not have those advantages. If he wins the title next season,I’ll personally start a Crowdfunding site for his statue.

June 7, 2021 2:17 pm


Yes, AP is a huge gamble. The odds are stacked against him… experience of managing in Europe, probably little knowledge of playing resources. In addition, expectations are high….he has to hit tge ground running.

I would like to know how wide the net was cast in the recruitment process but it is unlikely we ever shall. Why did the Howe deal collapse or was it never really on? Did his family tell him that moving to a city of riots and petrol bombs was not on? Was the club too big a job for him? Who knows?

I know a lot of people are of the view that if AP is appointed then they must get behind him. However, I am not of that view. It is easier for me because I do not have the social aspect associated with game time. However, how else can displeasure be shown other than withdrawing financial support? Hence, I wish AP well but I shall not support the club, financially. They lost that when a) they appointed NL unprofessionally, and b) failed to remove him early enough. I want to come back but the club has to earn my support by transforming into a professionally run, modern football organisation.

I wonder if my case is typical of other fans? Just a few years ago I believed that Celtic was a well run club…..that PL was doing a good job. I still cringe at that memory! My belief was founded on the fact that the business was in the black, whereas our rivals were stumbling from one financial crisis to another……sustained artificially. What I failed to see was that opportunity after opportunity was thrown away through mismanagement of the football department, mainly in recruitment of management and players. Year after year, Celtic’s reputation in Europe was shredded by clubs like Utrecht, Legia, Malmo, Cluj, Copenhagen and Sparta Prague. It will be interesting to see what history says about this period. Will domestic success gloss over the steady competitive decline of the club?

No, personally, there has to be a point when enough is enough. DM and AP may be the answer….I sincerely hope so……but I need evidence of a turn around before I commit. The ball is in Celtic’s court.

In the meantime, I enjoy watching Liverpool and I shall continue to do so rather than subscribe to CelticTV. This is the sad reality that the Board must grasp if the club is to move forward.

Rant over,


big packy
June 7, 2021 3:27 pm

AFTERNOON ALL and JIM, how did it get to this, a well respected former european cup winning team, and well respected champions league team, beating barcelona, manchester united etc at parkhead, now we cant even attract a manager, our first choice is holding out for southampton, good god almighty, now we are getting a guy who has never managed in europe, but the good old celtic board can spot a manager when they see one, we are now slightly above auchinleck talbot and that is on a good day, rant over👍

June 7, 2021 4:06 pm

Rebus 67
For the foreseeable future i am in agreement except for the watching Liverpool bit.
Have the EPL ,Bundesliga ,Italian and plenty South American teams that are part of my tv package.
Do watch some EPL but find myself less interested in the tilted and corrupt modern football landscape.
Even having Champions league and Europa games rarely tempts and have many other things that interest me more.
If they are on in the background a dramatic event sees me looking up from a book or computer.
The Bundeslegia can be watchable.
Gave up Celtic tv `two years ago and honestly feel better for doing so.
Will never spend any money on Celtic again until DD is gone.
Strangely i don’t feel guilty watching on some weird streams.
Buffering sometimes was more exciting than the drab fare of recent seasons.
Celtic seemed to have decided to follow the SFA’s long trodden path of terminal decline without there being any repercussion’s to date.
The circumstances of the pandemic will make the decline irreversible for many clubs.
With the public having less financial choices the once great game will become a casualty as there are many better and cheaper alternatives.
The emotional pull is declining and that is a slippy slope for an entertainment industry that is sadly lacking.
Many Celtic fans still feel an emotional connection with fellow fans but anger followed by apathy that our PLC created may be hard to reverse.

June 7, 2021 4:13 pm


An excellent and thought-provoking piece. I only wish that we had someone-anyone, really-on the board with that level of footballing intelligence.


That was an excellent point, that good managers only ask their players to perform tasks that they are capable of. As you know, Big Jock thought this way. His mantra was:
Play to your strengths and disguise your weaknesses.

I really hope that the postman-see whit you’ve started here Rebus-plays the possession game, with each player coached to be in certain positions, at certain times, to give the man on the ball plenty of options. I love Celtic teams that let the ball do the work. There is nothing worse than seeing a player running about like a headless chicken, with no clue as to what his next move should be.

As for Strachan and Kennedy remaining. He’ll no. After that disgrace last season they should have followed NL out the door.

Just a thought:We already have Fran Alonso on the books. As well as coaching our women’s team, could he have a role to play in coaching the men?

Hail Hail.

June 7, 2021 4:15 pm


Damning appraisal of our club,and the wider game.

Personally I’ve only watched Celtic in real time recently,plus the occasional “big game” like the CL final.

Wish I hadn’t have bothered,tbh.

June 7, 2021 4:26 pm

Regards Kevin Muscat possibly joining us. Personally, if he’s a good coach, I couldn’t give a tinker’s feck, which dead club he previously played for. If he’s good enough, he should be welcomed.

Only hope he’s not expecting an EBT…

Hail Hail.

June 7, 2021 4:48 pm


I outlined a bit of the process for hiring a coach/manager as followed by professional agencies that do this for a living. The intent was to let everyone evaluate how well Celtic performed in each
phase of the process. Was a systematic process followed? Did the club use the services of an agency? On the one hand you could argue that considering a manager from Jan is spreading the net widely, but on the other you can say that since Yokohama are part of the M. city group, it is the usual narrow approach adopted by PL. Personally, I am in the latter camp.

On Kevin Muscat….despicable player who set out to injure players but is he a good coach? He lasted six months in his last job which was his only management job in Europe! Says a lot, I am afraid.

Thetic… posed a poser with your style/tactics comment. I think I know what you mean but I do not agree with you. Man management is very important and I should have included it in my article. Howevet, try telling Pep Guardiola that tactics do not matter! He lost the CL final because he chose the wrong formation, leaving out Fernandinho gave Chelski too much room in midfield. I think the truth is that both man management and tactics matter.

Here is a thought that I had as I fell off my donkey and made an ass of myself………….Wait for it…………………………………..

Steve Clark for DOF!!!

Makes sense. AP screws up, Steve steps in until a new coach is found. Steve knows the player pools and playing styles. With him in place after the Euros, we could hit the road quickly. To my knowledge, he has never said anything negative about kangeroos!


June 7, 2021 4:54 pm

Got to go to the bank now to tell them about their poor customer service so I shall be marked absent for a while. For those that commented favourably on the article, thank you. You are all good looking as well as intelligent! For the others, may you find wisdom soon!

Thanks to our intrepid blog masters who let us all post our thoughts, however rambling they may be.

Good health to all,


Margaret MCGill
June 7, 2021 5:02 pm

I can save a lot of you the amount of time you spend on thinking about Celtics hiring process. There is no need for anymore conjecture or second guessing. The process that Celtic follow for any prospective employee:
Coaching staff
Media staff
Is all the same.
On any given day
It’s what Peter Lawwell decides.
If he decides to make any decision that day

June 7, 2021 5:03 pm


Fair point re Muscat. I obviously haven’t done my homework. Thing is though, if Ange wants him as his No 2, he must have something. Surely?


June 7, 2021 5:25 pm

On the Muskat story and ebts: This is what happens when u go along with a lie, the consequences turn up later to bite u on the arse. I’ve no problem with ex Rangers player who was physical coming in as a coach, every team needs hardness, but having been paid by an ebt to rob us of points is a step too far.

The remedy of course for Celtic to disagree with LNS findings but if Horlockb is the new managers choice Celtic make it clear to him why it might be unpopular.

June 7, 2021 5:30 pm


I totally agree with that. And with MAGS beforehand.

Not a principle left in Kerrydale St.

bada Bing
June 7, 2021 5:38 pm

FORMER Rangers defender Kevin Muscat is not being lined up for a coaching job as part of Ange Postecoglou’s Celtic backroom team, Herald Sport understands.

June 7, 2021 5:42 pm


I like the “ Postman “ nickname.

And if he delivers on time, then that’ll do me nicely.

HH 🍀🍀

June 7, 2021 6:25 pm

Hi Rebus I posted last night as my head hit the pillow, if I had posted when I got up this morning it would probably have been a different post. As everyone has said your post is good and thought provoking and gives us something to chew the bone on
There is no one single factor that makes a good coach as there is no single factor that makes a good cop, teacher or any othere professional , I just hope our next guy has a good combination of all the factors involved

June 7, 2021 6:46 pm


I have looked at some of the stuff I have posted in the past and shuddered. Let’s hope it all works for the Postman.

Finally, because some people say my article is good, does not make it so. Having read it, I’d do it differently now.

When I taught, I learned that the best time to write your lecture is immediately after you have given it! Makes sense, if you think about it.


June 7, 2021 6:59 pm

Rebus, Honestly not referring to your article but the point you make in your post is so true. After I post something I very often use the edit facility. To change a word, to delete something , and often to add something after reading it. Then pressing ‘refresh’. Usually up to about 10 minutes after posting. Mainly after I posted something other than my normal chit chat.

Mike in Toronto
June 7, 2021 7:01 pm

When is the draw for the EL pool? And how do I pay?

(apologies if it has been posted, and I missed it).

I must say I am looking forward to the Euros this year. No bad groups, and some really tough ones (Germany, France and Portugal!) …. hopefully, we will see some good football. Dont really care who wins (as long as it is not England)…

on that note, Mahe, dont really care who I get in the draw, so long as it isn’t England… am prepared to pay an extra tenner to ensure that is the case.

Sol Kitts
June 7, 2021 7:18 pm

The edit button is a godsend for those of us who let the fingers type before the brain fully engages. I always take a moment to read through my ramblings before I post it, just to make sure I won’t offend anyone unnecessarily. I’m not worried if my views aren’t shared by anyone else, but I always try to remember that everyone else can hold a view completely opposite to mine so I try to be respectful. Even then, the occasional post slips through, and that’s where the edit button comes into its own. Won’t be the first time I’ve read a post and immediately had to edit it.

St tams
June 7, 2021 7:19 pm

I was asking the same thing yesterday.
I’m sure PayPal was mentioned

June 7, 2021 7:30 pm

The cost of avoiding Engurland is now a minimum £100 due to nobody wanting them 😂😂😂

June 7, 2021 7:30 pm

Sol Kitts, yes. It’s amazing how 5 or ten minutes after typing you can want to take maybe a bit of the sting from a post.

Damage limitation! LOL 🙂

Mike in Toronto
June 7, 2021 7:37 pm


sounds perfectly reasonable

June 7, 2021 7:39 pm

Evening all, Rebus i enjoyed todays leader, it was to the point(s) and a lot less disheartening, that is no reflection on earlier leaders from both our hosts, god knows they’ve had nothing cheery to write about lately with this awful season, and i applaud them for their daily leaders.

Yes there are many qualities one has to possess to be at least a good Celtic manager, and so many things can go wrong, a lot will depend on whether our slimy board will back the manager or try to curtail his achievements, will players who have formerly not GAF toe the line as they should have done in this important season, he will be up against it from day one with the weasels in the SMS, can he do a sterling job with his hands tied, only time will tell.

10 days without a paypal address for the European Championships Charity Sweepstakes, Mahe is bloody worse than the PLC. 🤣


June 7, 2021 7:40 pm

Poor Mahe! 🙁

June 7, 2021 7:42 pm


June 7, 2021 7:42 pm

Packy, Did you and wee Joan guess The Masked Dancer’s I.D.?