Celtic's actions have put Ange Postecoglou under unneeded pressure from the start

By David Walton

May 30, 2021

After Eddie Howe’s Celtic snub this week, fans have every right to be absolutely infuriated with all parties.

For months it’s felt as though all we’ve been waiting on is confirmation of the move. That everything had been agreed and that Howe was simply waiting for the Bournemouth season to finish in order to get the staff he needs. This looked like it was going to be a formality, or at least that’s how Celtic were happy to allow it to be pushed.

After the talks collapsed, Celtic were quite rightly vilified by the supporters for how they’ve handled the situation. That we’ve allowed two months of pre-season work to be wiped out all because we gave Howe far too long a time-frame to make his mind up.

Celtic informed 67HailHail on Friday of the collapse and the reasons for it. They informed us that Eddie Howe couldn’t assemble the team he wanted to work with in Scotland. This being down to aspects such as family obligations and an inability to leave contracts with Bournemouth.

Personally, as a Celtic supporter, I have a host of problems with these excuses.

Celtic’s handling of Eddie Howe saga puts Ange Postecoglou under immediate pressure

Let’s tackle the first one. Family obligations. Really? This wasn’t something Howe and Celtic could’ve been informed about say, two months ago? Maybe when Howe had initially agreed to become the new manager? What was honestly to stop Celtic and Howe from seeing whether family obligations were going to be an issue at the very start of this saga?

Then you have the second issue. The inability to leave their Bournemouth contracts. What? Had Celtic even approached the Cherries to try and buy them? Again, what are the reasons for this inability? Why on earth haven’t Celtic managed to find out that this was a problem weeks ago?

Celtic have led us down a prolonged trail of hope and expectancy only for it to lead us to disappointment and despair. And now, because of how the Howe stuff has been handled, the seemingly incoming Ange Postecoglou is under imminent and needless early pressure.

Eddie Howe’s Celtic snub made little sense (Photo by AFC Bournemouth/AFC Bournemouth via Getty Images)

Had Postecoglou been appointed weeks ago, it would be much more accepted. We know he wasn’t the first choice, but it all feels so rushed and out of nowhere. Celtic should’ve given Howe an earlier deadline to make his decision. Failure to do that has changed the perception of supporters regarding how we’ve handled all of this. We were made to believe there was no chance of this deal hitting the buffers – that’s why the likes of myself allowed the club to get away with delaying the appointment.

Instead, yet more trust has been drained from the fanbase for how everything has been conducted. It’s as if Celtic had one more trick up their sleeves to leave us feeling rotten to sign off on the 2020/21 campaign.

It’s a shame for Postecoglou in truth. Any manager who comes into this job deserves the full backing of the board and supporters. Whilst he’ll get that, he’ll now have to deal with a massively strained relationship between the fans and the men upstairs. How he deals with it all is going to be absolutely fascinating. However it adds unnecessary obstacles in his path.

The fans have had more than enough. Postecoglou is going to be a risky appointment undoubtedly, and the board can expect absolutely no benefit of the doubt should things quickly unravel. Their new man is under imminent pressure, and it’s all their fault.

In other news, Pat Bonner has identified who he would like as an alternative to Eddie Howe.