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The McGeady Story Sums Up Why Some Celtic Fans Never Warmed To Strachan.

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I have always had the most tremendous respect for what Gordon Strachan did for Celtic in his first three campaigns as manager.

He was, in some ways, a bigger success story than Martin O’Neill, because he was the first of our modern bosses forced to “do more with less” and he made a pretty good go of it.

His Champions League record was stellar.

But I never warmed to Strachan The Man at all, and I never will, because there is a bristling arrogance there, a condescension, that was out of place in a Celtic boss, and an open contempt not just for our fans but football fans in general that has never sat right with me.

Strachan was also a petty tyrant, and I always thought it obvious that he played favourites.

The story, by Aiden McGeady, in the papers today about how Strachan took a dislike to him and even let that personality clash become a problem for our club, is not in the least bit surprising.

It’s exactly the sort of story I find easy to believe about Strachan, and one of the reasons that I would not want him near Celtic Park again in any capacity.

McGeady was a Celtic youth academy player …he could have gone on to be a proper legend.

Over the years a lot of us thought of him as having been disloyal to the club; in fact, I think now that the whole Strachan episode just sickened him, and his lack of backing from the club hierarchy, who took Strachan’s side and remain Strachan fans to this day, was probably one of the reasons why his form dipped and he decided to leave during the Mowbray season.

If McGeady’s version is accurate – and we have every reason to believe it, as he has never said a bad word about the club and although outspoken he has never been a liar or shit-stirrer – then Strachan singled him out for unfair abuse, even of a personal nature, and acted like the worst kind of bully.

But anyone knowing McGeady would be aware that he wasn’t the sort who would simply sit and swallow that, and it’s pretty clear he didn’t.

Even those Celtic fans who liked Strachan as a manager never quite got all the way to loving him.

He, too, never says a bad word about our club – on the contrary, he is one of its most vocal partisans in the media – but there is a kind of icy reserve amongst our supporters when his name comes up in conversation, and part of it is that he never really got on with us, as fans, and expressed his open contempt for a lot of us in ways that made the relationship tough.

It sounds like it would have been far tougher to sit in a dressing room which he commanded.

It’s not for nothing that many of us think of him as a football dinosaur from a bygone age where that sort of thing would fly.

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13 comments

  • Toromod says:

    Problem with this article James, is i don’t know what Aiden said. I don’t buy any newspaper or click on their weblinks. You have loads of comments about how bad the press are in this country, and i agree with you. So why can we know a story in any newspaper,

  • Frank Kelly says:

    I always thought it was because he was a wee man.I reckon we all know wee men who throw their authority around in an attempt to look taller. In reality it only diminishes them.

  • Johnny Green says:

    Like a lot of Celtic fans, I had hated Strachan since his Aberdeen playing days when the little shit stirrer delighted in winding us all up. Although I eventually accepted him as our manager I never quite got my previous dislike for him out of my system. He did do a reasonable job at Celtic Park during his time as manager, but we were boring to watch and I was glad to see the back of him. I believe Aiden.

  • Charles Antony Taylor says:

    It should be remembered that several managers out with Celtic labelled McGeady as “trouble” in the dressing room. I believe that Willie McStay also exiled him from the youth set up because of his attitude.
    I’d have GS before McGeady anyday

    • Jimmy says:

      Can’t disagree with Sean or Charles. Strachan managed us through some great results, in Scotland and Europe. Mcgeady always was a wee Ned, loathed by some of own teamates.

  • Hamoflage says:

    It’s a myth that Strachan did more with less, the cost of football operations didn’t reduce during his tenure and he spent money in the transfer market. His CL record is no better than MON’s either, both got to 9 points twice by winning their home games, the difference is that other results allowed Strachan’s teams to qualify, MON was less fortunate.
    What certainly is true is that the standard of football and footballer at Celtic dropped every year Strachan was in charge until it was painful to watch before he left. He was a bad managerial appointment in an era of bad appointments and is representative of Lawwell’s failure to build from a position of strength.

  • Martin says:

    Bollocks. Strachan was a great manager and McGeady was as greedy off the pitch as he was on the ball

  • Johnny Green says:

    What does greedy off the pitch mean exactly, a big eater? Yes he was greedy on the pitch, but the 9.5 million we got for him after the disastrous Tony Mowbray year helped Neil Lennon build a very good side.

    • Martin says:

      He left because his idea of his wages and the clubs differed, regardless of what he’s saying now. He saw himself as a superstar before he earned it.

  • Gerry Mcinally says:

    I really don’t get this at all. Gordon came in at a period of downsizing and worked miracles in building a team for the champions league. Apart from Ange show me someone who’s done better in the modern era

  • Brian Quail says:

    Strachan was a great manager at celtic the problems with him and my.geady is that he wanted to leave and the board encouraged it it wasn’t Gordon.s fault

  • Mark B says:

    Strachan was stellar for us. CL especailly. But McGeady sale actually funded the squad rebuild to win three in a row. Those are the facts. I think it was right to sell him and the club benefited overall.

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