Chris Sutton flags up 'huge concern' at Celtic after agent's comments

By John McGinley

May 22, 2021

Chris Sutton thinks Celtic are severely hampering their recruitment of players this summer by not appointing a manager early.

Heading into the last week in May, there’s no real sign that the Bhoys are prepared to make a big managerial announcement.

We’ve been reduced to taking hope from English Championship play-off games, as discussed earlier.

Sutton isn’t happy and reckons the club have severely stunted their Champions League ambitions.

He’s particularly concerned by comments made by former Celtic defender Lee Naylor earlier this week. He’s now an agent and heavily criticised the club’s recruitment on The Celtic Huddle Podcast.

Bayer Leverkusen 3-2 Celtic | LIVE Reaction

Sutton told The Daily Record this weekend: “No manager, no director of football, no head of recruitment, and we’re heading into June.

“Lee Naylor’s revelation during the week was a huge concern. He’s an agent these days and he said he didn’t know who to speak to at Parkhead when it comes to offering players.

“That’s a massive worry. Celtic are in a tough market, with a lot of competition. They can’t afford to spend silly money but there are not many good players available as bargain buys.

“The longer this goes on, the further down the queue Celtic will find themselves. I get the fact this will not be a quick fix and it might take the club some time to turn it around. That doesn’t mean any short term ambitions should go right out of the window. It’s astonishing these Champions League qualifiers have almost been written off.”

Presumably, some sort of transfer planning is happening at Celtic right now.

It’s my understanding that the way it usually works is the scouting team put groups of targets together for problem positions. This is then discussed by a transfer committee in regular meetings, with the manager signing off on players to go for.

The Celtic and Eddie Howe wait goes on / (Photo by CATHERINE IVILL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Clearly, the lack of a permanent boss in place makes the second part of that process difficult to complete unless someone such as Eddie Howe is already effectively working for the club.

Celtic will have to move quickly once any appointment takes place and staff can openly negotiate with agents and clubs without any secrecy.

Time will tell whether Sutton’s anxiety has merit.

In other news, St Johnstone succeed Celtic as the dominant force in Scottish football with incredible double.