The London Times has confirmed that Celtic is facing a major hurdle in their efforts to hire the Australian manager Ange Postecoglou.
Things are actually worse than we suspected, with The Times hinting that although he worked in Europe in 2008 that he may not have the requisite B or A licenses either, because these lapse after a time and any manager who wants to renew them effectively has to sit the courses again.
For anyone who doubts this, no less a figure than Jurgen Klopp recently expressed his frustration at being told that he must go “back to school” to renew his Pro License, as every coach must.
If Postecoglou doesn’t have those qualifications then the deal’s off before it’s even properly on, because sitting for those will take him several years.
When Australian coach Kevin Muscat ran into the same problem at Sint-Truiden in Belgium the club had to create a special role for him as Technical Director until he had completed the Pro License course, which took around six months.
But he had the A and B UEFA licenses to fall back on, and as club Technical Director he wasn’t allowed to take training or have anything to do with coaching the team.
It’s bad enough that we all suspect John Kennedy will remain at the club; how would you feel about having the Australian on the books for a year whilst Kennedy ran things?
Because that’s the scenario we might well be looking at here.
The one thing we’re learning, folks, is that there is nothing too stupid to be true when it comes to this board.
There is no screw up they are not entirely capable of making.
They claim that they’ve been tracking this guy for months, so it seems impossible that they could have missed this, but really it’s not impossible at all.
Because I don’t believe that this deal has been bubbling away for months, it reeks of lastminute.com … and if it is a panic measure then it’s all too possible for our club to have overlooked even something this glaring in their rush to close a quick deal with someone low-profile enough that they know he won’t turn the offer down.
The next few days will tell the tale, but I’ve looked at this from every angle and unless I’ve missed something huge I don’t see a way we’re getting around this, and Ewing Grahame of The Times is the first serious journalist to ask the question.
But he is not going to be the last.
This could well be the story that dominates our day, and I hope our board has an answer.