"This is on the board"; Chris Sutton doesn't hold back after Celtic friendly defeat

By Euan Davidson

July 24, 2021

Never one to shy from an opinion, former Celtic striker Chris Sutton has blasted the Bhoys’ board for not backing Ange Postecoglou enough.

Following a 6-2 home defeat to West Ham United, the ex-Bhoys striker repeated claims he’d made before, stating that it would be a miracle if Celtic progressed in the Champions League qualifiers.

Sutton didn’t put any blame at the door of new boss Ange Postecoglou, nor the Celtic defence. Instead, he pointed fingers at the board.

Granted, it was only a friendly. However, looking ahead to Wednesday night’s tough second leg against FC Midtjylland, Sutton didn’t hold back.

He said [Premier Sports]:

“This isn’t on the manager, this is on the board, this whole situation, what he has to work. This isn’t on Dane Murray, a young centre-half, giving the ball away. He’s been put in a position where he’s up against a street-wise, top class Premier League centre forward, who gave him and Welsh a real lesson.

“It’s a learning curve, but [Postecoglou] hasn’t been given the tools.

“I said before the game on Tuesday night against Midtjylland it was going to be tough. It’s a Champions League qualifier, he hasn’t been given the tools to work with, the manager.

“The board should’ve acted quicker, he said it himself!”

Former Celtic man Chris Sutton is being a touch reactionary after friendly defeat

Sutton continued [Premier Sports]:

“It was men against boys, it was so wide, the gap – West Ham are in a different class. And this wasn’t West Ham’s best team, they have four or five players coming back which are going to make them stronger.

“The gap is so big, he has very little to work with, and Wednesday night, if Celtic get through, it’s going to be an absolute miracle.

“It’s up the Chief Executive Dominic McKay who’s had a slow start, he needs to get the wheels in motion. Maybe this will be a good thing in the long term, how can you say it’s a good thing after you get embarrassed 6-2 in your home park?”

Dom McKay: called out by Chris Sutton / (Credit – Celtic FC)

Now, this is maybe a bit much. Yes, Celtic were absolutely dire at the back today, conceding 6 goals at home. However, it’s a friendly, and the difference in levels between previous pre-season games and how Celtic played in Europe was marked. It’s also worth bearing in mind that the Bhoys essentially fielded two separate teams today.

Of course, Sutton’s right that Ange Postecoglou needs more backing, but it’s been repeated by the boss that it’s a frustrating situation all-round. Player transfers, in general, are taking longer than they normally would.

That, and the quarantine rules make it an even more annoying affair. Unless you sign a player hyper-locally, chances are they’ll have to go through self-isolation procedures. We’re seeing that now with Kyogo Furuhashi and Carl Starfelt.

Still, Sutton’s voice is one that you’d expect the board would pay attention to. How they react is anyone’s guess.

In other news: what we learned from Celtic v West Ham