So yesterday turned out to be the day we had dreaded; the one where we found out that Howe’s agents are holding out for something else after all. The one where we found out that this guy might well be motivated only by the money.
Note the use of the word “might” in that sentence.
Because this could have been a lot of things; a little example of brinksmanship. Howe keeping his options open. It could have been a guy trying to wheedle a little more out of the deal. Or it could be nothing at all.
Everything here is going to revolve around a lot of “ifs buts and maybe”; if the Arsenal job came up and he had a shot at it, would we be surprised if he took it? No. If he ended up at Crystal Palace or some other mid-table battler, then there would be no dressing this up as a “football decision” and it would come down to money and nothing more.
Do we really want a manager motivated by money? The first chance he gets he’ll skip out of Celtic Park for a more lucrative offer. I think it would be good to find that out, to know the kind of person we’re dealing with, and to have that established, before he walks through the door.
The hints in the news today that we’re willing to move for Favre (and, indeed, that we’re probably talking to him already) shows that we’re not going to mess about much longer here. One thing we’ve learned; the new manager won’t start until 1 June.
That is not ideal, friends, not in the least … but we do appear to have clarity on that matter. We will name someone before then.
The new boss will be involved in identifying targets and analysing the squad from the moment they are confirmed, but the nuts and bolts stuff won’t come until June. It’s as I strongly suspected; we’re stuck with Kennedy and co until this campaign ends.
For good or ill, this is where we are now and we need to get on with things on that basis.
I still think it’ll be Howe. If he’s holding out for another club, which club?
Newcastle? Run by Ashley, where he’ll struggle to do more than just survive?
Palace, who are only ever one notch above being relegated?
Some think Everton, as he’s a fan … but I see no sign that they are going to part with Carlo Ancelloti.
Southampton will keep faith with their boss, or that club risks turning into a self-parody where they sack someone every few years.
There may be a vacancy at Arsenal; I doubt it, but you never know.
If there is, is I reckon they will aim higher than Howe, with all respect to him.
I think Howe’s people are playing their wee game. I think this is a bit of last minute negotiating through the media. According to the one reporter who has actually spoken to people in and around Celtic Park, the club seems pretty relaxed about all this.
And to me, that’s worth considering,
Because this is in the public domain now, our pursuit has been more or less confirmed and acknowledged to be fact. We know we need to close this, or pull off an appointment that really blows the doors off … or the club might as well not bother sending those season ticket renewal forms out at all. They are well aware of what is at stake.
The waiting game goes on. Rumours and counter rumours will fill cyberspace. That’s to be expected. The media will play its usual game of stirring the soup and trying to get negative reactions out of us all. But the next week will tell the tale.
Told you it was going to be a bit of a wait, didn’t I?
Nothing’s ever easy with us. Nothing.