by on July 28, 2019
Gordon Strachan has proved an elusive character at the best of times, but he surpassed himself in the immediate aftermath of last night's title triumph at Tannadice.
Such is the intensity of scrutiny afforded to both halves of the Old Firm that saying nothing can mean plenty. Strachan, who had already refused to be interviewed by Setanta's television crew, offered a brief statement to the written media before retiring to spend time with those who had "supported and believed in" him throughout a turbulent season. It was, simply, a two-fingered gesture to those who the diminutive red-head feels have been waiting to tell of his demise.
The manager's attitude in victory irked many while leading others to believe he is already packing his suitcases and returning to his south coast hamlet. Initial suggestions are that such a theory is wide of the mark, something which may finally be welcomed by Celtic's followers.
Strachan, of course, has no duty to be compliant with or even polite to the Scottish media. fußballtrikots kaufen His job is to win things with Celtic, a task he has taken on with relish since 2005, even if - for a man who claims not to have opened a newspaper in three years - he has formed a rather swift opinion on the fourth estate.
The media have criticised Strachan for his transfer policy and tactics, yet to suggest that his own supporters did not do likewise, and in vociferous fashion, would be a wild exaggeration. If you did read the papers, Gordon, you may have noticed quite a few of us pointing out the lunacy of fans' despair.
Now is the time for giving credit, though. While Rangers' late season collapse has been spectacular, any team who can string seven SPL wins together - including two in derby games - to claim a championship by three points is worthy of meaningful praise.
Strachan should be the recipient of the same. Lacerated for the apparent failure of his "blue chip" signings, the manager pulled something of a rabbit out of his woolly hat when securing Barry Robson from Dundee United in January.
Robson, typically a wide player when in tangerine, has been converted into an industrious central midfielder by Strachan; the £1m spent to bring the 29-year-old to Glasgow has proved a masterstroke. Robson has provided spark and energy when Celtic needed it most, and provided an ideal partner to Paul Hartley.
Both have embodied the Celtic surge, as did Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink - 19 goals in a season isn't bad for a striker widely castigated in many quarters. Gary Caldwell received similar treatment but was, without doubt, one of Strachan's finest performers in the closing weeks.
It seems unlikely that the prospects of a fourth SPL crown in succession would tempt Strachan to stay. Rather, an opportunity to once again make meaningful inroads into the Champions League - Celtic will go straight into the group phase of next season's tournament while Rangers face the daunting proposition of two qualifying rounds - is
">fussballtrikots günstig kaufen enticing. Could Strachan legitimately walk into a job in England where regular European football was guaranteed? Moreover, the chance to spend an improved transfer budget and, being blunt, convince others that he can successfully buy and manage high-profile players, will be appealing.
It is clear that Strachan loves the football side of his job. What he objects to is not being able to visit a petrol station or the cinema without receiving abuse. Give him his Southampton lifestyle, added to Celtic worklife, and he would be the happiest man alive.
Those who have watched Strachan's Celtic may even concede that they are nowhere near Jock Stein's counterparts - the last Hoop-clad side to win three in a row - but history should not lie. Strachan, against all the odds, has proved the dissenters wrong; even if those punters now erroneously insist they were behind him all the way. Celtic's manager is entitled to savour this triumph; he needn't even do it in front of a camera.
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