Celtic F.C. Should Appoint a Boss Before Targeting Players

Andrew McNairSenior Writer IMay 19, 2010

GLASGOW, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 04:  Neil Lennon, the manager of Celtic, reacts on the touchline during Celtic's victory in the Clydesdale Bank Scottish Premier League match between Celtic and Rangers at Celtic Park, on May 4, 2010 in Glasgow, Scotland.  (Photo by David Cannon/Getty Images)
David Cannon/Getty Images

I struggle to come to terms with modern day football sometimes, and I am only 25.

How can a team, who have yet to confirm their manager for next season, be making approaches to players?

It emerged today that Celtic are lining up bids for Hull City’s Jimmy Bullard and Arsenal’s Sol Campbell, yet interim gaffer Neil Lennon is in limbo as to whether he is to be named the next full-time boss of the Glasgow giants.

Who is to say the man who finally gets the job will even like these players?

Now Celtic wanting to sign Bullard and Campbell is probably not the best example, as most managers would give their right leg to introduce such a pairing to their squad, but recent history is littered with players bought against the will of the current manager or before a new one is appointed—only for him not to fancy said player.

Call me old fashioned, but I’d say Celtic’s first priority is to name a new boss who would then have all summer to build the squad he wants, not spend the summer looking for a manager who likes the players the board have already signed.

I can’t imagine (as a professional wanting to play regularly) ever signing for a club where you do not even know who the manager is going to be.

As it turns out though, former England international Campbell would rather stay at Arsenal and is apparently astounded that he is not in Fabio Capello’s 30-man provisional England squad.

When you consider he started the season at League Two’s Notts County, it is not too hard to understand, is it?

That said, he has performed well since returning to the Arsenal fold and would be a giant in Scottish football were he to make such a move.

Now Celtic’s new gaffer, whoever it may be, might object to his salary budget being swallowed up by two players, one of whom is renowned as injury-prone.

Jimmy Bullard is such a player.

A classy midfielder with undeniable leadership qualities, Bullard he will still be lucky to be fit for half the league matches, especially in the hustle and bustle of the Scottish Premier League.

It would be a gamble and maybe even a chance worth taking, but in my opinion that gamble should be down to the man who has to pick the side, has to re-shuffle the pack for half the season’s matches, and has to do it with players signed on limited salaries (unless they fancy being in serious debt like their cross-city rivals Rangers), as it will be he who is fired should it all go wrong.

If Bullard is a Lennon target and the Northern Irishman is to be the new boss, then why do Celtic not just say so?

If not, then stop approaching players, and get a manager appointed.

Truly, football decisions should always be made by the manager.


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