Yesterday, in The Scotsman, a bitter, sarcastic and clearly frightened hack penned a ludicrous piece asking why, if the Celtic job was so big, that so many big names had turned it down.
I laughed reading it.
Nowhere did he suggest that any big name had been approached to do so.
Nowhere did he give an example of such a big name except Roy Keane … who most of us would probably not class in the bracket the writer does.
Here’s the truth; Celtic is a huge club, but one that’s been cruising in the slow lane for the past few years.
Despite that, and the environment in which we play, we’re a club with massive appeal both for players and bosses around the world.
Has our reputation taken a hit? Yes, of course it has.
That happens when your CEO goes out of his way to construct an image of you as a “selling club”, when only a year after beating Barcelona he’s sold three of the best players and banked the cash. When the club now openly advertises itself as a feeder team for other clubs. It happens when your European performances tank and you stop even trying to reach the promised land of the Champions League.
Yet even with all that in mind, we’re still special.
Look at the names linked with the job today; Moyes, Rodgers, Giggs, Keane himself and even, so I heard, Hiddink.
Not all of these guys are as big as their names suggest – Giggs and Keane would be enormously risky prospects and we’ve had enough of those, I think – but these guys take us seriously in spite of it all.
We are easily capable of hooking a big fish.
There are obstacles to it, for sure, but nothing a club of genuine ambition can’t easily get over.
Finance would be part of it, of course, but an ambitious appointment will bring the fans home and give the whole club a lift.
Back him with cash, leave him to run the football side on his own, and see our credibility restored.
The issue isn’t whether or not we’re still attractive to top people, it’s whether or not we have the ambition to go out there and get one.
But Celtic still has lustre.
Our name still has power.
Scottish football isn’t a graveyard for ambition; it can be a proving ground.
A guy like Brendan Rogers knows his stock will shoot even higher if he can get Celtic into the Champions League groups and make us talked about.
David Moyes can rebuild his reputation and career here in a way he’ll never be able to do in the wreckage of Aston Villa.
We’re the ultimate challenge for a boss who wants to prove himself.
Imagine being the guy who restored Celtic’s great name throughout European football?
And there’s another thing, and it’s there for someone like Rodgers or Moyes, who understands the club and where we’re coming from; the attraction of ten in a row, and beyond. To build something that lasts beyond his tenure. To someone who gets what that means, a place in the pantheon of Celtic legends, that can’t be unattractive.
That door is wide open for someone who wants it.
Don’t let anyone tell us that it can’t be done, that a big name can’t be brought to the club. It means that our board has to change direction, that we have to show balls and ambition, but it’s time we did those things anyway.
The position we’re in right now is a consequence of decisions we’ve made.
We aren’t here by accident, or by necessity.
There’s no immutable law that says we can’t reach for the Promised Land again.
We’ve made conscious choices to limit our horizons and our dreams.
We can make different choices. We can dare to dream again.
And if we do, those big names will be waiting for us, and ready to take our call.