Davie Provan slams Peter Lawwell for woeful Celtic decline

By David Walton

April 20, 2021

Davie Provan has ripped into Peter Lawwell as he summed up the Celtic decline under the departing Chief Executive.

Lawwell will leave the club on July 1st when his replacement, Dominic McKay, will step into his shoes. McKay officially started working at Celtic Park yesterday, but will be part of a transitioning period over the next couple of months.

His predecessor will leave at a time when fan anger towards him is at its peak level. A failure to make an earlier decision on Neil Lennon left Celtic supporters infuriated. Lawwell has also been held for previous failures such as the appointment of Ronny Deila and a failure to help the team build under Gordon Strachan back in 2009.

But with 10-in-a-row gone, fan apathy is at it’s most prominent level. And Provan, who was speaking on the Go Radio Football Show, was in no mood for niceties as he looked ahead to Lawwell’s final days. Instead, he simply highlighted the cataclysmic decline in standards since he took up the role in 2003:

“When Peter Lawwell came into the club, Chris Sutton and John Hartson were playing up front for Celtic.  They had just got to the final of a European trophy, the UEFA Cup.  Peter Lawwell now leaves the club.  Look at the team he’s leaving.  Look at the squad he’s leaving and look at the shambles he’s leaving compared to what he took over.

“Absolute shambles. And the rebuilding should have started as they’re (Celtic) already losing ground on Rangers already for next season.

“There’s no Head of Recruitment. There’s no Sporting Director. There’s no manager. A new Chief Executive is just about to come in but the whole place is in uproar.”

Peter Lawwell at Celtic has been a rollercoaster of emotions

There has undoubtedly been good times and bad times at Celtic under Peter Lawwell. The Brendan Rodgers era cannot be ignored, granted this was largely done because Dermot Desmond moved to bring him in.

You do have to commend his business work off the pitch at times of course. He’s managed to steadily increase the valuation of our player sales despite regularly underperforming in the Champions League. 10 years ago we were celebrating the £9.5m fee for Aiden McGeady’s move to Spartak Moscow [BBC].

Nowadays Celtic are selling their best assets upwards of £20m after the departures of Moussa Dembele and Kieran Tierney in recent years. We can now ask for fees that we could never have dreamed of in the past. Granted, the inflation of the football market in general has played a big part in this.

Dominic McKay will replace Peter Lawwell at Celtic / (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Looking at the bigger picture under Lawwell, you can’t say he’s been a rip-roaring success or a serial failure. We can’t only put the negative times down to him, nor should he take a massive amount of the credit for the title wins under Strachan and Rodgers in particular.

This season, however, has been a total shambles. Lawwell has managed to flush away nine long years of hard work to get into a position to secure an historic 10th straight title. What’s even more dismaying is the fact that it wasn’t even surprising how he and Celtic conducted their business this season.

His departure has been celebrated by the Celtic support. McKay, meanwhile, will need to understand where Lawwell went wrong. A repeat of his predecessor’s mistakes and he’ll be sharing the same fate further down the line.

In other news, the English Premier League players have been talking about Celtic joining their top flight.