Celtic AGM: Celtic chairman Ian Bankier admits board is accountable for losing 10IAR

By Euan Davidson

November 17, 2021

Celtic chairman Ian Bankier has admitted that the board are accountable for the torrid 20-21 campaign.

So much was expected of Celtic. After an excellent 19-20, both domestically and in Europe, the squad was there to achieve a historic tenth consecutive title.

Through a number of factors, that just didn’t happen. A squad that had looked confident and was added to in the summer looked bereft of ideas. Knocked out in the Champions League qualifiers to Ferencvaros, a team we’ve subsequently beaten twice, the wheels fell off early.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Neil Lennon was kept around long after the campaign looked out of control. As a result, performances and results were bitterly disappointing. Meek cup exits and dismal Europa League showings only added to the capitulation.

That led to passionate protests. At that time, the board kept largely quiet and backed their manager in Lennon. However, Bankier now admits that some soul-searching was required.

In an interview shown at Celtic’s AGM, Bankier said [Celtic FC]:

“It’s hard to see positives. The reality is we didn’t achieve our primary objective, the bottom line is we’re accountable. As a board, we’re accountable for that. We’re accountable for that as we were for all the other seasons, and there’s just no shying away from it.

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“We’ve analysed in great depth what happened, what went wrong, how we got to the position we were in.

“Obviously there were lots of things outwith our control. But there were lessons, and we’ve learned them.”

Finally: some accountability from Ian Bankier and the Celtic board

The attempts last season to obfuscate and deflect blame eroded any real trust the Celtic support had with this board.

To be fair to Bankier, he was right; this was the same board who had delivered so much. But with the strong position Celtic were in, progression was the only option. With the advantages we had, there was really no excuse for losing the title in such dramatic fashion.

Instead of placing the blame on others, this seemed to signal a change of course, and it could’ve been a pointer for the AGM at large. In the end, not so much; Bankier fiercely defended the board against criticism, but it didn’t exactly work in his favour.

Photo by Alexander Hassenstein – FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images

If the board, post AGM, show genuine accountability over the failures of last season, then it could sow the seeds of renewal in the trust between the fans and those running the club.

Perhaps that’s wishful thinking.

In any even, the invisible man of the Celtic board Ian Bankier has finally shown some accountability.

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