There is a certain grim inevitability to stories about Scott Brown as a potential Ange replacement somewhere down the line.
This should be stamped on with full force even as something entirely theoretical. We cannot go from an elite level manager to a guy with only a handful of years under his belt, unless those years are spent at a much higher level and with trophies to back them up.
We’ve had this discussion before. We had it when Larsson was being touted as a potential boss on the basis that he had managed a club back in Sweden, and the thought horrified me like few other ideas ever has.
I loved Larsson as all of us did. My memories of him will forever be of the iconic footballer who terrified our rivals and was the last genuine world class performer my generation saw in our beloved Hoops. I never wanted that tarnished.
I dearly wish sometimes that Neil Lennon had remained a great club captain, and although I know he’s achieved something no other player in our history has – to win a treble as captain and manager both – I never believed he should have had the job in either instance and I think we went backwards as a result of those appointments.
I wish I could remember Lennon only as the player. It’s hard to do. And there are Celtic fans who will swear until they are blue in the face that Lennon as boss was nothing but an unqualified success. If that’s up for debate – and it is – when you consider his trophy haul, then there are so many, many ways that a Scott Brown appointment could go wrong.
This one nags at me more than it should, and the reason it does are a series of what I am certain were not throwaway comments from Lawwell and Desmond and Bankier when he left the club at the end of the Lennon collapse. They all suggested that he would be back one day, and my thought upon hearing that was that they must know something we don’t, because he was a long way from being qualified for any post on the coaching team.
It’s that kind of thinking – he served us well, they like him and therefore he’s automatically in the running – that scares the Hell out of me. It’s precisely how we ended up with an untested Lennon in the first place, promoted right out of coaching the youths to being the front man for a multi-million-pound footballing operation … utter madness.
I know there are people at Celtic Park who do think those things would justify his hiring, and if he has some modest experience that would only enhance their view.
That’s why the idea has to be killed in the crib, before they start succession planning along those lines.
You know what my gut tells me? Brown will grow into a real contender.
Because his instincts are good and he learned under some exceptional people including Rodgers.
I would have loved to have seen what Ange could have done with him, that would have been truly amazing, and as a member of our coaching team he would have learned plenty.
But he’s not ready, not yet, and rushing him into the job would only invite exactly the disaster every one of us would rather avoid.
Let him earn his spurs, make his mark, and work his way bit by bit towards a place where it seems inevitable and not just because three gushing fan-boys who happen to be on our board thought that it should.
If it’s the right thing it will happen and it won’t need to be given a push.