Be In No Doubt, The Celtic Boss Was Talking Direct To The Board Last Night

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There are things that most of us cannot lie to ourselves about.

There are things which are so clear that any effort to re-interpret them is just nonsensical, and requires an act akin to Orwellian doublethink. All of us have limits beyond which we can’t maintain self-denial any longer. I know some of our fans have to be close to the breaking point. The rest of us are well past that.

Listening to Brendan Rodgers right now requires no interpreter to make things clear. He’s speaking as plainly as I’ve ever heard a Celtic manager talk about the team and the squad and what it requires. Within the limits of what he can say to us in public, he’s skated not only up to the line but is now doing the circumference, riding that line every time he’s in front of the media.

He’s not talking to himself out there on that line. He’s not out there talking for the sake of opening his mouth. He’s not talking to us either, not entirely. He knows we’re listening, and it’s very important to him that we are, because the people he’s talking to are his bosses and he knows what they do not; we’re his real bosses and we’re theirs as well.

He’s talking to the board. He’s doing it in language then even those who want to believe that there are no splits, that everyone at Celtic is on the same page, must surely find it impossible to ignore. He’s not disguising his frustrations in any way, shape or form. He’s telling them that to succeed he needs them to deliver for him, and he’s telling us, indirectly, that he’s being handcuffed by the policy.

What’s his game here? He’s trying to bounce them. But he could be talking this same language behind the scenes, and might have been all along. Why’s he doing it public? Why is it the song he sings at just about every press conference? Does he just like talking about it?

He’s doing as well as could be expected, so he’s not fighting for his job or trying to lay the blame that will stop him from being sacked … he’s trying to bounce them, and the reason he’s talking this way in public is that he wants our help to do it. He wants us to know how pissed off he is, and he wants not only our understanding but our assistance.

He wants us to speak up. Loudly. Without us, this guy might be pissing in the wind. The board knows he won’t quit again, not if he wants to maintain any relationship with us at all, and they might be under the misapprehension that they can deny him what he requires and get away with it because what choice does he have but to accept it?

We’re his insurance policy. Listen, since I’m written from Rome let me put it in the imperial vernacular; we’re his Praetorian Guard.

We’re supposed to have his back, we’re supposed to watch out for him, aggressively, and make sure he knows he has the backing in the stands. Rodgers needs us and he needs us right now, and we need him because if a man like this can’t command enough respect in that boardroom can you even imagine the sort of Yes man we might get next?

We’re never going to progress under this one-note policy and you know what? We failed Rodgers the last time he was here. We didn’t do enough to fight for him and then when he got pissed off enough to leave we blamed him for it.

The more I watch this pattern repeat itself the clearer it becomes that we should never have allowed the board to get away with it. You see who we got to replace him. You saw the results. When this board thinks it holds all the cards this is how it plays them. We have had to push them to be better or deal with the results. We owe Rodgers.

It’s time we had his back. For our own sakes as much as for his. Once we’ve done that, we’ve given him the best hand he can play. From there on in, it’s up to him to play them well. Last night he sat in front of the media, yet again, and called out the transfer policy. He was talking to the board. But over their shoulder, that man was also addressing us.

We’re kidding ourselves to deny that one minute longer.

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  • Andrew says:

    100% correct

  • jim says:

    ..Lawwell…. what 5 way agreement? Is a hun in our sides.

  • Johnno says:

    Could do with upping his own game also, upon his decision making before the continuing excuses imo?
    When he gets the tactical decisions right then the performances have followed.
    When he’s got them wrong then the performances have been fairly flat and poor also imo.
    As manager he sets the tone for the team, so maybe if he becomes a bit more consistent upon his decision making, and maybe the performances may follow suit also imo.
    Personally OK about the return of Rodgers, but jury remains out upon what actual type of team he wants us to become also?

  • Roonsa says:

    He took the gig. He knew what he was dealing with. If he didn’t get the reassurances that we all thought he MUST have when decided to come back then he is the mug, not Lawwell and Co.

    It absolutely astounds me that he is talking like this. I repeat. He took the gig!!!!

  • Geoff says:

    Next day climb down.
    Tomorrow a positive signing story.
    Nothing changes.

  • Brian Boyd says:

    You are 100% right on what you have said and I couldn’t agree more, it’s up to us to stand up and be more vocal, and hopefully then the board will listen to what Brenden is saying

  • king murdy says:

    i would m be amazed if ANY celtic fan could not see the reason for successive european campaign failures/humblings….
    i suppose there may be fanboys that think we are doing well under the financial restrictions etc… injuries etc…bad referee’s…etc….Of course it’s the unambitious board’s fault….they are a fukn disgrace…nicholson,desmond and the 2 fukn lawwells etc etc….obviously, i have never met lawwell senior – but by fuk, do i hate him….i have said it before…and i’ll say it again…it’s an awful pity he wasn’t asleep his car when it went up in flames….because it looks like it’s the only way we are gonna get that arrogant fukr out of parkhead…
    the thing that get’s me…BR had all the cards in his hand when he was being “courted” by them….so, what assurances did he get re team building? why did he accept the job if not..?..and has he got a case to justify walking away again ? i know if i were him….i’d be off….he was right the first time..
    it’s turning into a shit show….AGAIN !!
    james forrest, in the starting line-up, in an away CL game we had to win….?? you have to be fukn kidding…..!!!
    we are a complete joke in europe….and we are doing a hell of a good job in assisting the huns to catch us in the league-thank christ they are so unept…
    but hey……didn’t we have a photo shoot with the pope !!! who’s fukn idea was that i wonder ?
    ” a club like no other”… can say that again !!!


  • Dan Dwan says:

    Of the 17 million euro that has been spent on players since Brendan Rodgers return in June only Luis Palma could be considered at this stage as a first team starter. Nawrocki, Lagerbielke,Holm, Tilio,Iwata,Bernardo, Philips( the latter both loan signings. ) the jury’s out on all these players and whoever rubber stamped the signings of same be it Rodgers,Nicholson, Liewell?? must have known they will not be going straight into the first team and are essentially project signings, a sad incitement of our clubs transfer policy. In addition considering we have lost Juranovic, Mooy Jota Starfelt all first team starters bringing in over 37 million euro in transfers…. the team has gone backwards dramatically.. enough to possibly secure a domestic championship at best. A serious lack of ambition to progress in Europe or at least challenge,this is a board that doesn’t seem to care. As the old saying goes ‘you reap what you sow’ and that’s reflected in the dismal European performances. Celtic once a giant of European football are now fast becoming a laughing stock also rans all thanks to our Board of Directors, who are only interested in lining their own pockets and treating the paying punters like fools.

  • Paul Mac says:

    Which is why we should restructure the club with the Football dept run in a separate way. The board should set the budget and then hand it on to a Football dept … Therefore the Football dept know the money they have and can use it AS THEY SEE FIT. Any future sales 30-40% go into the Football dept with the rest going to the club. This will prevent any of the “we don’t want to go like the other mob” comments as the Football dept and the Club are run as separate entities. This also guarantees that the players coming in are 100% chosen by the FOOTBALL people and not the accountants looking at a future profit. Many of the continental clubs are run on this model. Would our board relinquish the control however ? Even though it would be in their best interests as they would no longer face the anger of the fanbase if the signings failed. Also the youth team .. It should be discussed whether this experiment of the Lowland league is bearing fruits? If not then maybe regular friendly matches with other B teams would be better for the players development. It should also be mandatory that they provide minimum 1 player for the first team … thus allowing us to refresh and maintain the UEFA quota. Are the coaches actually doing their job correctly or are they just there because they are good Cellic men ? Tobi was sent out for what purpose? He has not played 1 minute according to the stats,unlike the fullback who is a regular starter. Bosun was sent to Fleetwood even though he required 1 year more to qualify as home grown … if we had any idea of him being registered in the future or are we going to cut our losses? He did play very well the other day vs Italy U21 against Gnonto the Leeds player.

  • Peter Cassidy says:

    Not buying this about Rodgers want quality why did he not make sure he got the quality when he came back knowing this team would not be good enough for cl or Europa. . He left us last time because of liewell buying shit players .

  • Jim Duffy says:

    Here’s hoping our penny pinching board listen to Brendan as well as the fans.

  • sligo123456 says:

    Does Bill Murray and ground hog day ring a bell? It should do as it all looks like I have seen that movie to! How Pistol Pete was allowed in the door aagain beggars believe! There in lies the problem IMO.

  • Michael Murray says:

    All very well and i agree however, who fo you buy? Seriously id love to know who would come? I use FC Copenhagen as a guide. No big time players or manager. No hge money chest. But consistently avhieve credible European performances. As for our team we are just too small. Brenden should be able to improve teams but Id suggest he is back at Celtic because no one else wants him? We do have better players than the ones he picks already at the club. We have Vata who is being pursued all over Europe I wouldnt know how good he is because he doesnt get a run.

  • Jim says:

    An accurate and important summary I’d say, James.
    I still maintain though, that BR must have sought and recieved certain assurances before committing to a 2nd spell in charge. I would imagine this would have been through DD?
    Are these assurances falling short? or was the plan just to use him win THIS years League to get our hands on the increased Booty?
    It sounds like BR is trying to create a situation where, if he does walk; the fans will sympathise that it was clearly because of a Board and Strategy that isn’t willing to genuinely look beyond the The SPL.
    P.L. would not have been too chuffed about Brendan’s return and I’m sure will be enjoying his predicament.
    For me, Celtic have proven beyond a reasonable doubt, that they have no GENUINE ambition beyond Scotland.

  • mark b says:

    I was surprised he took the job again. This is exactly what happened last time. I was annoyed he left but understood when we signed the likes of Comper. Lawell was a good CEO for us for years I respect the success he managed on and off the field. He let us down badly in 5 way agreement (Celtic should have refused to play unless titles were stripped) and in the 10 in a row squad re build. When he left he should have stayed away. We need to spend 30 m …5 players 7/8m each. CH DM CF and LB and GK for next season. Its clear. We need to buy quality. Scales Yang Taylor Forest Turnbull Iwata Oh Holm even Palma, all good squad players but we need 4-5 new starters if we are to compete in Champions League (for group 3rd place I mean not even last 16). Its so obvious and we DO have the MONEY to do it, what is the point of it sitting in the bank its POINTLESS. OR rebuild main stand over a 2 year cycle spending 30m this year and 30m next with CL money and 30m year after and its done. WE HAVE THE MONEY. . There is so much to do with that money. I reckon you could build a decent main stand for 75m Two tieer basic fitting out ….leave LOTS of space for corporate and build that out lavishly over time. 20,000 seats at £4000 per seat to build is 80m. Would repay for itself easily over 5 years with a HUGE number of corpoate seats build even more than in the N Stand….make it 5k corporate seats at 3k each is 15m per season FFS. ID buy one , I really would and many others would too. 15k seats at 400 each is another 6m per year. so 21m per year return on investments. its so OBVIOUS ………………..Should I be on the Barrd perhaps ?

  • mark b says:

    Yes 5 players at 7/8m each is more like 35-40m. I have a degree in Maths, shocking i typed that wrong sorry folks in too much of a hurry. In my head I started with 4 players lol replacing Hart is next season.

  • Jim Duffy says:

    Hello James ,why am I blocked from adding comments?

  • sligo123456 says:

    No comments posted on this today?

  • John S says:

    The ‘January Sales’ tend to be rash and last-minute rushed. Ironically, the Board will be rather reserved on spending on quality and experienced players given that there is no Euro campaign. Whilst the squad is more than enough to win the League the club need to consider longer-term progress, especially in Europe, and identifying the personnel that the manager requires.

  • Clachnacuddin and the Hoops says:

    Today is the 1st of December – Interesting month of footy lies ahead…

    Not so much footy in January – But that’s an interesting month as well –

    That month will show a ‘signing’ of the times for sure !

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