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The “Ange To England” Stories Were Inevitable, And For Celtic Fans They Are Already Boring.

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After whipping the Ibrox club at the weekend, I knew that there was a certain inevitability about the old “Ange will not hang around in Scotland” stories starting up all over again. Had we gotten a result on Tuesday night they would have reached a crescendo.

On TalkSport, one hack tried to suggest that he was a good fit for Chelsea, who had just sacked their boss. The favourite for that job is Graham Potter, currently at Brighton. When it became clear that Stamford Bridge was probably out someone pitched up with the idea that Ange might fancy a dead-end job by the seaside instead.

Good God, but it’s pathetic isn’t it?

These stories, of course, are heightened by the fact that Ange is still on a one-year rolling contract; if he wanted to walk out tomorrow, he would probably cost the club that took him less than we paid for Matt O’Riley, and the robbery would be ten times as great.

But you know what? Celtic, and Ange’s, calm over this tells me something; both parties are very relaxed about where his future lies. If Celtic had any doubts they’d offer him a long-term deal with some heavy guarantees written into it. If they did, I am certain he’d sign it. He is not the sort of man who would leave us in the lurch.

This is not Brendan Rodgers. We have to remember that. Rodgers has wanted to be the star in every story that ever played out in his head. He thinks that the best place to get that big spotlight shining on him is England. This is one of the reasons why he itched to return there.

Ange sees things in a totally different way; he sees things in terms of his personal satisfaction and a connection with his surroundings. He is a builder, and they tend to hang around. He gets Celtic in a way Rodgers, even with his background, never did.

I think Ange sees the opportunity to build a dynasty here.

Personal glory doesn’t mean as much to him as it does to someone like Rodgers – I cannot envision him ever winning a trophy and taking the credit for the achievement for himself, as our former manager brazenly did when he won the FA Cup at Leicester and framed it as part of his own success story – but he understands that cementing a place in our history is a better option than playing some modest role in that of some mid-table struggler somewhere.

He knows what Celtic is, and he knows what it can be. He is supremely confident of making this club into the perfect encapsulation of that vision.

If there was the slightest doubt in the minds of anyone at Parkhead about this guy he would never have got the backing he got in the summer until such a deal was put in front of him and signed. The man is a class act, a genuine person of worth who knows that value isn’t measured in pounds and pence but in the highest standards of loyalty and personal conduct.

Don’t worry about these stories. There will always be stories like this when a manager at Celtic is successful. This man is going nowhere except forward at the helm of our club.

What a journey it’s been already, and I don’t think it’s even properly started yet.

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10 comments

  • Scud Missile says:

    Lol on FF they want big Ange gone to give them a chance to get back into the running for the league.
    This time last year they had been laughing at him,now they see him as a good manager and dangerous towards anything they can achieve they want him gone.

  • Benjamin says:

    I hope I’m wrong, but I don’t share James’ optimism that Ange will be here for more than a couple more seasons. He’s a genuinely decent man who shares Celtic’s ethos in a number of different areas, but at the end of the day this is his career we’re talking about. He left Japan in the middle of the season to come here – why do we think he wouldn’t do the same again if it was the right opportunity? I don’t think he’ll be leaving for Brighton or Leicester or whatever the opening du-jour is in England. But if he has the kind of success here we all think he’s capable of, one of the mega clubs will eventually come calling.

    With the exception of perhaps Pep Guardiola – who was in internal promotion at Barcelona – every big name manager out there at the mega clubs got their start at lower level clubs. They punch above their weight class, get noticed, and get an opportunity at a bigger club. That’s how this business works. If he gets us into the KO rounds of the Champions League and continues to make a good showing against the top teams, someone is eventually going to make him an offer he can’t refuse. And it might come as early as this season.

    A good recent example is Marco Rose. He got relatively unknown Salzburg into the Europa League quarterfinals and didn’t lose a single home game his entire tenure. He lasted two seasons before departing to the Bundesliga. In his first season with Mondegladbach, he got them qualified for the Champions League. The next season he got them to the KO round of the CL. Then Dortmund came calling and he was gone.

    I don’t know that a pot 3 team would tempt Ange, but we’re living in denial to think the megaclubs in pot 1 or pot 2 wouldn’t tempt him. And I would include the top teams in Europa this year in that as well (Man U, Arsenal, and Roma).

  • Martin H. says:

    The spotlight is definitely on Rodgers now, and Ange will be here a lot longer, than G.v.b.

  • Johnny Green says:

    Ange is a man on a mission, he wants to be the best and he also wants Celtic to be the best along with him. He loves the club, he loves the supporters and he has been relishing all the challenges he has taken on. He is already more of a Celtic supporter than Brendan Rogers ever was and, because he appreciates the opportunities that Celtic have given him, he will go nowhere until he has created his own dynasty. Any Club who fancies their chances can approach him, but he is not available.

  • Effarr says:

    Would Ange manage to
    get all those rich prima donnas into his way of playing? He would maybe struggle. Rogic wasn’t slow in getting off his mark when the 90 minute shifts were introduced.

  • kingmurdy says:

    i wouldn’t be so sure james…
    he get’s celtic into knock-out stages…we give a good account of ourselves there….then there is every chance a high profile/richer club will come calling….and Ange will be off…
    it’s the way of the football world…if jock stein was in his lisbon lions pomp nowadays….he’d be gone also…celtic are well down the football food chain…
    Celtic FC are bigger than any one manager,player or CEO……they’ve come and gone and we are still here…
    HAIL HAIL

  • Cheezydee says:

    There’s no way he’ll be going to Brighton. And I think he’d stay until he felt he’d achieved what he could here. But let’s not kid ourselves that if a club in one of the big leagues came with money that he’d say no. Rodgers was our highest paid manager getting something like £3/4m a year, replacing Deila who was on 500k. I’d be surprised if we were initially paying Ange multi millions. Rodgers went for around £7m a year? Would anyone here turn down £5m a year extra?

    I’ve said it before, but Ange to be Liverpool boss, maybe in next 2/3 years

  • Kevan McKeown says:

    Personally dont see him leavin anytime soon. Wishful thinkin by most in the media.Tho would be nieve tae think if Ange continues tae be successful here, there’s no possibility of him movin on within the next 2-3 seasons. Stands tae reason he’s already attractin attention. It’s the way things are these days. Although as we know, our rivals would love him tae dae a rodgers on us, ah don’t see him treatin the club or support like that.

  • Bob (original) says:

    I agree with most of the blog above – but why leave it to chance that he stays longer?

    Surely, last season alone deserves recognition of a longer term, bumper deal?

    If he is on a 1 year rolling contract, and a bigger club comes in with a 3 or 4 year deal at a multiple of his current salary – would he consider it? Would Ange think that he should already be on a 3 or 4 year contract at Parkhead?

    The Board will probably chase Ange off in due course, and the lack of a longer term deal is complacency on their part.

    And as ever, if you want loyalty get a dog!

  • David Miller says:

    James, when are you going to stop bitching about Brendan Rodgers? It’s getting really tiring . As for Ange, I’m not sure he wouldn’t walk at the first offer from a mid table English club .

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