Ange Postecoglou comments on brief Dom McKay era at Celtic
Ange Postecoglou has suggested that the departure of Dom McKay has caused no real disruption at Celtic Football Club.
Postecoglou, asked about McKay’s return to sport, seemed more interested in discussing the acting CEO Michael Nicholson, who was particularly involved in recruitment over the summer.
McKay came in around the same time as Postecoglou. It was hoped the pair would herald a new, progressive era for the club. McKay with his communications and vision off the pitch, Postecoglou for his tactics on it.
Alas, it never worked out that way, with McKay leaving only 71 full days after his arrival.
On the boardroom upheaval, Postecoglou sounded largely undeterred or distracted from the task at hand. He said [Celtic FC, 16.22]:
“As I said last week, with Michael taking over, it didn’t really disrupt me. Because Michael was pretty integral in all of that, anyway. He was somebody I already knew and we were already working together.
“He was one of the key people in all transfers we did, coming in, he’s the one that does all the legal work, all the paperwork, a lot of the negotiation. So there was no real change there.
“From my perspective, there was nothing that would hamper us moving forward.”
Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou dismisses held perceptions about Dom McKay
The impression was that Dom McKay would be central to a lot of what the club was going to do moving forward.
That meant player recruitment, hiring staff, modernising the club structures, and so on. Except, from what Postecoglou says, it was Michael Nicholson who was far more key to all that.
As the Director of Legal and Football Affairs, not much was known about Nicholson from outside the club. The sense we get now, though, is that he was and remains a big player in terms of how Celtic operate.
It’s interesting that Postecoglou says the shock departure of McKay didn’t disrupt him. It looked for all intents and purposes that the pair were a bit of a double act. McKay, certainly, seemed to take pride in helping bring Postecoglou to the club. But how pivotal he was in doing that now seems more opaque.
There were even worries about what McKay’s departure meant for Postecoglou; if he was still sold on Celtic, if he’d been delivered false promises, that kind of thing. Now, that seems faintly ridiculous to consider.
It’s not that the Celtic manager is being disrespectful. More, it looks as if it was a fleeting partnership of sorts, that involved a cast of other characters who have since stepped up.
Clearly, Ange isn’t going to get emotional about it, and it doesn’t change the job he has to do: winning football matches for Celtic.