John Kennedy discusses Nick Hammond's scouting department at Celtic

By John McGinley

January 9, 2021

Celtic assistant manager John Kennedy was asked about scouting at the club today, and he gave a bit of insight into the department Nick Hammond runs.

The Bhoys’ Head of Football Operations is a bit of a mystery to supporters.

He rarely gives press interviews, and it’s not often we hear anyone from Celtic speaking about his role.

At today’s press conference, TheCynic.co were on hand to ask Kennedy about the extent of the scouting department.

Neil Lennon’s assistant was also asked whether Brexit will play a significant role in recruitment moving forward.

Speaking on Celtic TV, he said: “I’m not totally clued up 100% on the Brexit stuff, but we have discussed it. It does bring new challenges in terms of bringing players into the country. That’s something we need to well aware of.

“Nick Hammond and his team are very well aware of that.

“In terms of our scouting, Nick’s been in for well over a year now. He put in some new processes, and he’s brought in new personnel within his team to make sure we’re covering as much as we can.

“Nowadays, so many clubs are all fighting for the same places, the same players, in the same areas. You’ve just got to do as much work as you can behind-the-scenes to be ahead of the game.

“We’ve got to keep finding the players, keep improving as much as we possibly can.”

Jury out on Nick Hammond Celtic scouting

Given the mysterious nature of his role, opinion on Nick Hammond can wildly vary depending on the overall feeling surrounding the club.

When we’re doing well, his success stories are talked up. When we’re doing poorly, his signing failures are at the top of the agenda.

We’ve certainly had some transfer ups and downs since he arrived in 2019. For every Jeremie Frimpong, there’s a Boli Bolingoli.

Overall, we don’t seem to have moved away too much from the on-the-hoof nature of Celtic transfer windows.

Nick Hammond is in charge of the scouting at Celtic / (Photo by Craig Williamson/SNS Group via Getty Images)

Though it must be said, the club’s business during the last transfer window was widely praised at the time.

Personally, I’d like to see the club conduct more interviews with Hammond and members of his scouting staff.

They don’t need to give away any secrets, but regular updates would be very welcome. It might just start to turn around the perception of our transfer strategy.

That kind of communication strategy from the club appears to be absent, sadly.

In other news, John Kennedy has provided an injury update ahead of Celtic’s match against Hibernian.