An Accountant and a Lawyer walk into a football club,,,
,,,and both manage the club very differently under the same owner. Polar opposites almost, and the arrival of Harry Kewell will be further proof of a new strategy.
The accountant wouldn’t have sanctioned him I suspect, not with four coaches already in situ, and Harry aligning with Ange gives him more of a power base within the footballing department. Peter was loath to see footballing operations or its figurehead grow too strong, he liked to wear the trousers in the relationship and not be dictated to, especially over hires.
Given Harry’s age and nationality, he has the opportunity to become an integral part of our Greek Australians backroom staff, and as such would most likely move on with him. He’s not necessarily an asset for the club, I don’t think he’s a long term coach we can count on down the years, rather an extra hand for the here and now.
He’s an asset for Ange though, and that’s what counts these days. Changed times indeed.
One can imagine the gaffer asking the CEO to have his preferred players signed early, so the entire unit gains a full preseason together with zero disruption and late comers.
One needn’t imagine Peters response to the request, we witnessed it often enough.
The EPL squad culls and navigation through the early season qualifiers dictated our transfer strategy for many years.
With no qualifiers and eyes looking much more afar than our immediate neighbours to the south, his way of doing business would have been obsolete, and incompatible with Ange.
Thank goodness he’s no longer involved.
Its ironic that upon Peters departure the club shall break the magic 100million barrier, something he achieved only once.
However unlike his predecessor, our CEO is taking steps to secure the income stream and not gamble with it.
The big hundred should be our new benchmark, our yearly aim and a lofty platform from which to dominate domestically whilst making an impact in Europe.
Step number one, get a good manager and keep him happy but within budget.
Michael is making this look easy, hiring early and not pennypinching, plus the exotic targets cost less so the budget is safe. Both men are on the same page here. The gaffer has no reason to complain and feels supported thus wanted.
Step two, lay down the building blocks for success. While Ange gets compared to Martin occasionally, look at the age of the Derry man’s signings. Most were for the here and now, already in the prime of their career. Some key players depreciated in value over the course of their Celtic career such as Lubo, Boyd, Lambert, Sutton, Lennon, and Thompson.
Others such as Joos, Jacky, Henke, were entering their footballing prime and as such needed prime rewards for their perceived last big contract.
They were great times, but footballing operations wasn’t in the healthiest position.
That’s been fixed.
A lot our our signings are not in their prime, but aren’t punts either.
Ange has a fantastic eye for talent, that’s a fact. Abada, O’Reilly, Ideoguchi, Hatate, Juranovich, Taylor, Welsh, even Ralston, have all yet to reach their prime, and they haven’t had a taste of the insane money floating around the EPL so their salary ambitions stand a chance of being fulfilled at our club. It won’t be enough for some, I imagine Jota will earn much more elsewhere one day, but our maximum salary will entice a few to hang about.
Nir and Tam were happy enough for instance.
Our players in or around their prime aren’t depreciating yet, as they are on the better side of thirty. There’s no aging talisman ala Broony or Lubo, so overall the outfield ten would have a low average age, around 25 I suspect which is very healthy indeed.
That’s a team for today and tomorrow, and tomorrow’s something Celtic managers often forget or ignore.
The building blocks of success have been laid, the train is on the right track and need only be continually fed the correct fuel to keep running.
Michael seems to have cottoned onto this fact.
Of course as fans we are entitled to ask why such a big swing in policy?
Dermot is the simple answer.
Hands off failed us in Peters case, I’m not saying he’s hands on now but Michael is clearly doing the job much differently.
Is it simply the Accountants love of figures and balance sheets that has departed, to be replaced by the Lawyers efficiency and expediency?
I believe so.
One can just imagine the lawyers brain ticking over thinking ‘you get your players, I keep my balance sheet looking good, silverware flows and fans are extra happy, it’s a deal now please sign here, here and here.’
I’ve wondered if Michaels council or input was ever heard by Peter, given he clearly has a different modus operandus.
But then, he’s a lawyer.
I mean no disrespect but if asked what’s your preferred profession for your CEO, a lawyer wouldn’t top my list.
Ironically an accountant would be up there as I always envision him/her running a tight ship,,,this much pays the bills, this much for a rainy day (hotel), and here’s your pocket money.
I never imagined he would actually resort to spending your pocket money for you, on new toys that sucked for the most part.
The Lawyer seems much more prone to satisfactory agreement between all parties, who could have seen that coming?
Dermot apparently. After a scathing internal review, the footballing department has adopted a grownup attitude at long last. No longer on the hoof, no longer doing favours for agents (Rami Gershon), we identify and recruit, not take the best of what’s offered.
The footballing side of the club is doing well, and should run seamlessly for a few years yet.
We are in a position of strength.
Traditionally, we don’t build from here.
If times have truly changed, we will.
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