UEFA have informed Celtic that Ange Postecoglou doesn’t have the coaching credentials to take over at Parkhead, the Herald reports.
Postecoglou doesn’t have his UEFA Pro License, the required badge needed to manage in a top European League. The report claims that he also doesn’t have the updated A and B licences. UEFA have insisted that the Pro License is mandatory.
The Herald states that Celtic have reacted by trying to claim special dispensation for their seemingly new number one choice. The Hoops believe that his 25 years of coaching in Australia, Greece, and Japan is sufficient enough to allow him to replace Neil Lennon.
However, it’s been said by an official UEFA spokesperson that any appeal from Celtic could take weeks to finalise.
As quoted by the Herald, a UEFA source said: “Mr Postecoglou does not currently hold the UEFA Pro Licence. A recognition of competence procedure has been initiated [following Celtic’s appeal].
“In general terms, the duration of the whole process depends on the requesting party, meaning if they provide all required documents in due course. The process could take several weeks. We don’t have any further information to provide you with at this stage.”
UEFA hitch not ideal for Celtic and Postecoglou
Celtic should have an easy precedent here. Steven Gerrard didn’t hold his UEFA Pro License when he took over at Rangers. However, he took up the course when appointed and would end up passing it in 2019.
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The Hoops should surely be able to get the same deal for Postecoglou. The only potential difference is that his A and B badges apparently aren’t updated. But so long as he starts his Pro License, that will hopefully be enough.
The main concern for Celtic fans will of course be the idea that this could take weeks. Even now, the managerial search has dragged on for far too long. We’re nearly three weeks from when our season finished. The idea that Postecoglou may even miss the start of pre-season training doesn’t bear thinking about.
Granted, the UEFA spokesman only states that it “could” state several weeks. It wasn’t revealed as to what that timeline depends on. It could still be the case that Celtic get through this hitch with relative ease. UEFA aren’t giving much away.
But the prospect of him not being in please for the start of pre-season would be a total disaster. That would once again push our considerable rebuild further back and almost certainly leave us shorthanded for the Champions League qualifiers in late July. The manager simply wouldn’t have the time to sort out all of our key positions by then, or even most of them.
So fingers crossed some progress can be made here in the coming days. It’s all getting fire too tiresome for the Celtic support.