John Collins has announced today that he will follow Ronny Deila out of Celtic Park, which is welcome news for all supporters who wanted to see the current regime replaced entirely, a clean break made, and a new direction set for the future.
Collins’ personal statement was interesting for a couple of reasons.
First, he’s said that leaving with Ronny is the right thing to do because “I came with the manager so it’s only right I leave with him.” This is a good line, but it would be truer to say that he was appointed with the manager.
He wasn’t Ronny’s choice.
It’s not as if they were close and Deila asked him to come and join the team.
John Collins was forced on Ronny. He had no say in it.
Nevertheless, Collins’ departure is a sure sign that people inside Celtic Park know this particular experiment failed, and are putting a swift ending to all aspects of it.
This time next week the Celtic Park managerial chair will be an empty throne, unless work has been going behind the scenes to bring someone else in. I wouldn’t rule that out. There are whispers out there about Keane and O’Neill returning as a dream ticket to hammer back at all those who covet our status as the biggest club in the land. There are stories about Moyes and Rodgers both having been sounded out, but needing convincing to move to Glasgow. You’ve heard your own, I’m sure. Moves are afoot. Whether they’ll end in an appointment once the domestic business has been taken care of is all that remains to be seen.
I found Collins closing remarks even more interesting.
“A new manager will come in and bring his own staff with him,” he said.
On the surface that doesn’t appear to be ground-breaking, but it actually suggests that Celtic’s next boss will have a greater degree of control over his destiny than Ronny ever did. If reports at the weekend about a sizeable (for Scotland) transfer fund are accurate then tectonic plates might be shifting at Celtic after all, and this would be all to the good as far as fans are concerned.
And there’s one other story that piques my curiosity today; David McNally’s resignation from the chief executive’s post at Norwich.
Those of us who have called for Peter Lawwell to follow Ronny Deila out of the door – or out of the front line, at least – have long been asked who would replace him. I’ve always said there are dozens of viable candidates.
One of them is now available to talk to, someone who knows football, who knows what the CEO post involves.
Crucially, he was responsible for turning Norwich around financially, which is a big brownie point in his favour.
There’s one other thing though, and it’s why I might be putting 2 and 2 together and making 6.
David McNally worked for Celtic, where he was our Sales and Marketing Director, before going to work at Fulham.
His experience running a Premiership club would make him a standout candidate for Lawwell’s role if our current CEO was moved sideways, up or left Parkhead all together.
Putting Peter Lawwell on the board would be an obvious step, one few Celtic fans would object to, as it would allow him to carry on with his SFA and ECA roles and retain our influence on both.
There’s undoubtedly a lot more to come here, but I wonder if today isn’t a watershed one in our recent history.
Time will tell all.