Ian Bankier has failed Celtic supporters; there was one particularly insulting passage in that statement

By John McGinley

February 15, 2021

Chairman Ian Bankier has let us down and Celtic have made a mess of their communication with supporters again.

A promised statement updating us on the direction of the club and the status of Neil Lennon’s role as manager has fallen flat and, arguably, done more harm than good.

Fans are angry, they want answers, and the message from the club appears to be – shut up and let us get on with it.

One passage in today’s statement stood out to me as particularly insulting.

Chairman Ian Bankier said: “Across all media platforms, we have been asked to communicate our reaction to events on and off the park and to reveal our decisions and intentions. It is worth saying that over the period in question, the football manager has addressed each and every game we have played. The Club has made announcements dealing with speculation over the Manager’s tenure, the Covid outbreak amongst our players in January, the appointment of a new CEO and player sales and signings at the end of the January transfer window.”

Here, the club are justifying their own lacklustre communication strategy by referencing it as work well done. There’s absolutely zero acknowledgement that they may have erred in keeping fans in the dark on substantive updates and not PR nonsense.

It’s like someone selling you a dodgy car, unfit for purpose, you complaining and them saying: “We are being asked to sell cars and we sold you a car.” Astounding.

Are we really supposed to be grateful that “the football manager has addressed each and every game we have played”? Wow, thanks Celtic, Neil Lennon has completed his media duties as contractually obligated by the club per SPFL guidance. We are impressed.

No matter that he has failed to take accountability for any of our problems on the pitch since the December 7th club statement. No matter that he embarrassingly justified the Dubai trip and attacked any critics in a press conference that even the club didn’t want to promote on their media channels. Contradicting himself on the development and fitness of players? Let’s just gloss over that.

Ian Bankier has failed Celtic supporters

Bankier could have held his hands up today and said: “We know we’ve got things wrong, we know we’ve kept you in the dark, let’s fix it.”

Instead, all we’ve got is a promise a ‘review’ is ongoing. Celtic haven’t earned the trust to get on with work behind-the-scenes, not explain what the aims of that are, and expect to receive the same backing of season ticket holders as last year.

Celtic chairman Ian Bankier / (Photo credit should read BEN STANSALL/AFP via Getty Images)

It isn’t good enough. It’s insulting to our intelligence as engaged and passionate fans. They are so out of touch it’s unreal.

Nobody is expecting kneejerk decisions. Nobody wants action without purpose. We just want clarity that the club are moving forward in a constructive way.

They’ve failed to provide that, yet again.

In other news, Italian reports have suggested Celtic want to sign Diego Laxalt permanently.