Confirmed: Celtic goalkeeping coach Stevie Woods leaves Scotland role

By David Walton

August 24, 2021

Celtic goalkeeping coach Stevie Woods has officially left his role with the Scotland National Team this afternoon.

Tartan Army manager Steve Clarke has revamped his coaching setup after signing a new contract that runs until the end of UEFA Euro 2024 [SFA].

Woods joined Scotland back in the former regime under Alex McLeish. He was appointed to be the national team’s goalkeeping coach back in 2018, and stayed on under Clarke to provide some continuity.

It was during this time that Scotland managed to qualify for Euro 2020 in the summer. The qualification was down in large part to an inspired performance from goalkeeper David Marshall in Serbia – the man Woods has been working closely with.

However, a revamp of the coaching staff has today been announced. Austin MacPhee and Chris Woods will now join John Carver as part of the newlook group. Woods steps down alongside Steven Reid.

The Scottish FA have today thanked both for their service.

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Celtic goalkeeping coach Stevie Woods leaves Scotland with his head held high

It’s difficult to understand why Woods made the decision to depart the national team. Or why Scotland would potentially want to make a change. As of yet, it hasn’t been explained who made the final call here.

Regardless, Woods can leave the national team with his head held high. Scotland had something of a goalkeeping crisis after the retirement of Allan McGregor back in 2019.

Woods’ work with Marshall previously helped Scotland to find a proven number one once again before he lost his place at Derby. Clarke has called up Zandar Clark, Craig Gordon, and Liam Kelly for the upcoming matches.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

As for Woods, he has a massive task ahead at Celtic Park this season. With the Hoops struggling massively in the goalkeeping department over the last 12 months, the arrival of Joe Hart looks to have helped matters. It’ll be down to the goalkeeping coach to ensure Hart’s standards stay as high as possible given the lack of trust we can afford to place in the understudies.

So far, Celtic fans have been impressed with what Hart has had to offer. His leadership skills have been just as important as his goalkeeping. It’ll be down to the goalkeeping coach to ensure that the likes of Vasilis Barkas, Scott Bain, and Conor Hazard make the most of working with Hart.

In any case, Woods can always claim he was a key cog in ensuring Scotland ended their 22-year qualification drought. Mission accomplished then as his focus turns fully back to Parkhead.

In other news, John Hartson backs Odsonne Edouard to be a Celtic smash-hit this season

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