Gordon Strachan’s new role at Celtic has caused a fair bit of debate, and has also led to the SFA getting involved to dissect the appointment.
It seems that being employed by Dundee as their technical director, and working at Parkhead in a three-month consultancy role, may be a breach of Article 13 of the governing body’s Articles of Association.
The Professional Game Board will look into this, and if they feel the dual interest is a conflict, then Gordon may be asked to sever ties with one of the clubs.
Fair enough. If the rules state it needs to be investigated, then that’s all well and good.
But, frankly, I don’t see how there could be a problem. I do not see a conflict.
If Dundee, Celtic and Gordon are happy with the arrangement, that should override any concerns the SFA have.
It looks as though new chief executive, Dominic McKay, wants a fresh pair of eyes and ears to look over certain aspects of Celtic’s current operation, and then report back with his findings and recommendations.
Gordon knows Celtic, and knows football. To me, he looks like a sound choice to carry out this role for the Parkhead hierarchy.
Some in football have suggested that this consultancy work should have been given to a white-collar worker. But that person might not understand how the game works.
It remains to be seen if Gordon will have any direct contact with manager, Ange Postecoglou, and the first-team. But the wee man will most certainly look at aspects involving the club’s academy and the women’s team.
A shrewd move
I think it’s a shrewd move by Dominic. Early into his new role, he will have plenty on his plate. It will be non-stop.
Having Gordon employed as an adviser will take some weight off of Dom’s shoulders, as it’s just not possible for one man to cover every inch of what goes on in every department at Parkhead and Lennoxtown.
So this will give Dom a good buffer, and Gordon can have open and frank conversations.
Whether Dom – or club owner, Dermot Desmond – want to follow through on any of the dialogue with Gordon at the end of the three-month period is entirely up to them.
But they will all know that whatever Gordon reports back, it will be in the best interests of the football club. That is for sure.
Don’t forget, Gordon took over in 2005 from Martin O’Neill and won three SPL titles on the trot.
He delivered domestic success as well as the last-16 of the Champions League. And that was achieved during a period when the budget was being downsized.
Celtic would love to be back on that stage, something they’ve missed out on the last three years.
Their record in the Champions League qualifiers should be better, but they made progress in the Europa League last week after they defeated Jablonec 7-2 on aggregate, and will now face AZ Alkmaar from Holland, which will be a step up in level of opposition.
But they should go into the game with confidence.
The arrival of Joe Hart has added stability. David Turnbull and Tom Rogic produced good displays against the Czechs. And Kyogo Furuhashi is getting better and better with every game, and looks to be a top, top player.
In addition, Callum McGregor is growing more and more in the captain’s role with every passing day.
So there is no reason not to believe Ange and his players will progress to the Group Stages.
To have Rangers and Celtic both in European football until Christmas would be excellent.
If St Johnstone and Aberdeen join them with participation in the Conference League, then all the sweeter.
The Saints should be very proud of the way they performed over the two legs against Galatasaray.
McDiarmid Park had a terrific atmosphere for the second leg, and the players gave everything.
They face Austrian side, LASK, and that will be tough. But Callum Davidson and his players don’t have any fear, nor should they.
Stephen Glass is also heading in the right direction in his first full season at Pittodrie, and he is on the verge of taking Aberdeen into European football until early December at least.
They now face a gruelling trip to Azerbaijan to face Qarabag, but I think they can do it.
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