Lawwell’s Appointment To The ECA Board Is What The Celtic Chairman Does Very Well.

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There are those who wouldn’t have Peter Lawwell near Celtic Park. I personally would not have him anywhere his fingerprints are near appointments or the football department. But there is such a thing as “institutional memory” and it is why major corporations keep former chairmen and others around as long as they do, to use their knowledge and extensive contacts book and to give them heft in places where a total novice would not have any.

The news today that Peter Lawwell has been elected to the ECA board and will spend the next four years there and on a UEFA-ECA steering committee, setting policy across the continent, is important to Celtic and Scottish football and shows where his strengths lie. If he and others kept to their brief, stayed on their own turf and did these sorts of jobs, exclusively, the last two weeks would not nearly have been so fraught. This is where we are lucky to have the man.

The ECA meeting was clearly on the cards for a while.

But to give you an example of why having this man representing us at that level comes in handy, one of the subjects that was up for discussion, as revealed this morning in The Guardian, was the influx of money from Saudi Arabia and the way it has upended things for clubs. The reason for the discussion? The ECA wants UEFA to go to FIFA and bring back some cast iron guarantees that clubs who sell players to the Saudis will actually get back the cash that they are due.

That this is even being discussed and debated suggests that some of them are concerned that they won’t. Celtic appears fine in this regard; Benfica released the news just today that they brought in £7.2 million in sell-on fees for Jota … our money must be safely in the bank or the club must feel pretty damned confident that it will be.

But not all the clubs who have dealt with the Saudis seem to be convinced, and this is what the ECA does really well, and Lawwell has been there now for years, as a highly respected member. He definitely has crucial political skills and we can argue that he should have used them more often right here at home until the moon turns to cheese.

The fact is, he keeps Celtic’s flag flying high in the places where the real decisions are being made, and one of the reasons for Ibrox squealing over their summer transfer business is the changes to sustainability rules which he helped to usher in.

Eventually, the changes we want here in Scotland will flow from our club’s proximity to the decision makers. In case it’s not obvious, UEFA eyes are on Scottish football like never before.

Refereeing here is under scrutiny. VAR is under scrutiny. The funding of clubs is under scrutiny. Little by little, our national association is being subjected to pressure and forced to change. One by one a lot of the old certainties have fallen away. I wouldn’t even be surprised if the eyes in Nyon have been drawn to the Ibrox club’s “statistical anomaly”.

We should all be happy with this news, and proud that our club has someone at this level.

It might seem like a small thing but when you consider the things that go on right here on our doorstep it is good to know that someone is there at the top table. Lawwell should focus every single bit of his attention on that task, and let the genuine pros run the football operation. If he does that then not only are we in good hands, but so is the wider sport.

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  • Fun time frankie says:

    Liewell the rat is sick only interested in his own personal gain have you forgotten about the 5 way agreement with the sfa and sevco ,which he’s terrified will come out in the open and why the board never want confrontation with the sfa.

  • Gordon Raeburn says:

    I will never be proud of anything Lawwell does. Just remember that this same denied all knowledge of the 5 way agreement and denied it. He is partly to blame for the continuation myth. It is said he is a fan. No proper Celtic fan would have done any of that.

  • Paul Taggart says:

    First thing to change is the corrupt refs in this country get same rules as any civilised country brought in and then we ll hear some real screaming last week will seem like a tea party

  • Scud Missile says:

    Sorry James I can’t agree with what you have written there about LIEWELL,he is a CHISLER in the same mould as King,only interested in himself and what’s in it and best for himself.
    You say about the position he has took up in this article I wouldn’t be holding my breath for him doing or changing anything anytime soon.
    He has sat back and watched sevco ride roughshod over every rule in the book as if he is on a SPONSORED SILENCE.
    You mentioned FINGERPRINTS in this article are you forgetting his are all over that 5 WAY AGREEMENT,which he is still in denial, BIG DONALD style.

  • Peterbrady says:

    James just heard John bhoy cairney has passed one of us god bless hail! hail! What a way to go watching the boys put them in there place in there own midden

  • Johnny Green says:

    Yes, there are no negatives here. Having an influential man on the inside is a win/win situation. An inside track in football’s corridors of power is ideal and I’m sure we can rely on his apparent valued input, otherwise he would not have gotten the gig. He will obviously do his best for Celtic in that position and, as you say James, it will give him a focus away from the day to day running of the Club and hopefully prevent interference where it is not required.

  • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

    As much as I think he has botched a lot of issues (profit making apart) over the years at Celtic (interference at a football level, dragging his heels on transfers, playing poker which he is not good at, undermining Brendan) etc, I’m like yourself James in that it’ll be very useful to have him on this ECA board for the next four years…

    I’m sure he will do his best for Celtic and highlight the Sevco and SFA / SPFL skullduggery going on in the best wee country in the world, or at least I’d like to think he would –

    If nothing else though The Sevco Huns will be apoplectic with rage about this news…

    What a pleasant week in The Glasgow Football World !

    • Scud Missile says:

      So can you tell me then what has he called out over the last number of years since holding a TOP JOB at Celtic,that sevco have got away with.
      Not one challenge to anything they have said or done,as posted previously he is on a SPONSORED SILENCE when it comes to sevco.

      • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

        I chucked financially supporting Celtic a while back Scud – namely when Lawwell tried his Rory Bremner quip – it wasn’t enough about Sevco and simply didn’t cut it for me nor come anywhere near cutting it for me either so after 25 years that was it and. It’ll take a lot to get me back…

        He didn’t call out Sevco enough and given the attempt murder of him and his family I doubt he ever will now –

        I’m hopeful that he was influential in the new FSR regulation, but with Desmond saying claptrap like ‘Rangers (his words, not mine) are a fantastic club, then I’m not sure if he’d be allowed to damage this mental two horse race that they bizarrely cherish so much…

        Aye – And the least said about the five way agreement the better – It might all come out like the office secrets act in 100 years when we’re all long gone and kicking up the daisies !

  • Jim Duffy says:

    It’s a pity he wasn’t as prudent and influential over the 5 way agreement he supposedly knew nothing about,he is in this post with ECA for Peter lawell,and nothing or no one else.

  • Magua says:

    Smashing. Another cushy sinecure for an already obscenely rich man. Is this guy’s snout never out of the trough?

    Hail Hail.

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