"I'd be fuming"; Alan Stubbs gives verdict on Celtic and Eddie Howe drama
Former Celtic defender Alan Stubbs reckons the club are better off without Eddie Howe.
He has, however, criticised the board for not getting the deal over the line. The club has come under serious criticism over the last week, with the Howe failure causing severe unrest amongst the support. Stubbs, for his part, has laid blame at both the ex-Bournemouth boss and at Celtic for a very public embarrassment.
Howe was the leading candidate for much of the post-Lennon era. While substantial rumours continually linked Roy Keane, Howe was the supporters’ choice to land the Hoops job.
Stubbs told the Sun:
“It doesn’t look great for both parties. If I was the Celtic board I would be absolutely fuming.
“I can also understand fans being furious at the board for letting Howe put them in a vulnerable position.
“They put all their eggs in one basket and now are three months behind.
“Celtic identified their man and they must have thought they were in a great position to get him.
“In a way I am glad because anyone who wants three months to decide whether they will become Celtic manager is not the right guy.”
“Didn’t seem right”; Stubbs’ verdict on Celtic’s Eddie Howe chase
“As the weeks went by something didn’t seem right to me.
“For Celtic to allow one individual to dictate where they go next was surprising, especially when he wasn’t working.
“I just think it wouldn’t have been the right appointment.
“It would have been his biggest job to date by a mile. Wherever he goes next, whether that be Crystal Palace or somewhere else, it will not be a patch on Celtic.
“Yes, Palace might be a Premier League side, but we are talking about one of the biggest clubs in the world here. Maybe it was too big for him and maybe Celtic have had a result out of this.”
It’s certainly an interesting viewpoint. While we’d like to believe that Eddie Howe was overwhelmed by the prospect of managing Celtic, there may be a grain of truth there. The last couple of months of life in Glasgow were hardly a solid advertisement for a relaxing career path.
Having managed more modest clubs like Bournemouth and Burnley, Celtic are indeed a huge step up. The expectations are worlds apart, and perhaps not having everything in place as he’d have liked was too much of an issue. Other managers have taken a job before hiring a complete staff of their choosing. That Howe didn’t indicates a great deal.
Broadly speaking, it’s difficult to disagree with Alan Stubbs. But there’s no point pretending we didn’t want Eddie Howe to be the Celtic manager. Everything looked perfect, and the board allowed us to believe it was a matter of time.
What a difference a day makes.