Ireland great backs Roy Keane for Celtic but ignores club vision

By Euan Davidson

March 18, 2021

Talk of Celtic rejecting Roy Keane because of a ten-year managerial absence is “nonsense”.

That’s the view of Ireland and Liverpool hero Ray Houghton. The 73-capped Republic of Ireland international, born in Castlemilk, reckons that Keane has plenty to offer Celtic. He added that talk of Keane being “done” is premature, and that the former Manchester United man could still carve a career in top-flight management.

Houghton told TalkSport:

“His time with Martin O’Neill would have developed him as an individual and someone who understands managing a different way.

“Like with anything, you learn. When you’re playing, different managers say things. You think, ‘oh, I quite like what you said there, I’ll take that in if I’m going into management’. Other things, you’ll discard.

“That makes you into the manager that you want to be. Under Martin, he certainly would have learned a great deal. Whether he gets another chance or not, I don’t know. Is he the right man for Celtic?

“But this nonsense of ‘he’s done as a manager now’… this is what we do in football.

“I don’t know what’s going to happen with Roy in the future as far as management is concerned. He might want to go back into it, the rumours might be true.

“Dermot Desmond, who is still the majority shareholder of Celtic, he might feel that’s the next step for Celtic with Steven Gerrard doing the job he’s doing at Rangers.

“We’ll wait and see.”

Roy Keane, upon signing for Celtic / (Photo by Alan Peebles/Getty Images)

Counterpoint: no it isn’t “nonsense”. Celtic should not hire Roy Keane based on recent evidence

I have no particular beef with Ray Houghton. I can’t speak for my colleagues, but I’m pretty sure none of us dislike the guy.

But it would speak volumes about the esteem and stature of Celtic if we appointed a man who last worked as a manager a decade ago. In 2011, he was sacked by Ipswich after a dismal run of 7 defeats in 9 matches [BBC].

The Roy Keane to Celtic speculation is based on him being a public figure who supports Celtic. By the same logic, Kevin Bridges and Susan Boyle should be in with a shout.

There’s nothing in his recent managerial CV that suggests he’s good enough to manage the Bhoys in 2021. It feels like a gigantic waste of time even considering this. We’ve just got rid of a popular ex-player who attempted to shout the side into winning matches.

We were exposed in Europe, and have been dealt a huge blow in losing out on 10IAR. We need a clear tactical vision and forward-thinking figures working to improve Celtic. The club seemingly has a vision, involving a Director of Football, playing eye-catching attacking football and recruiting well. Roy Keane ticks none of those boxes, as we purportedly look for a more holistic structure at the club.

This is a massive mistake waiting to happen.

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