Over the last 24 hours the expectations of Eddie Howe being announced as the new Celtic manager have been downgraded massively.
From a report last Thursday of face-to-face talks with Dermot Desmond and Dom McKay there seemed to be a momentum towards the former Bournemouth boss being back in management within days or least weeks with Celtic drawn to go to Ibrox in the Scottish Cup on April 17.
Last night the mood music changed when representatives of Howe briefed Sky Sports and Sami Mokbel of the Daily Mail. The phrase premature was used alongside news that Howe wouldn’t be taking up any offers before the summer.
The issue of a Director of Football had been raised, without any comment from Celtic that they were even creating such a post it did seem that Fergal Harkin from Manchester City was being lined up for that role.
Howe’s arrival was likely to be accompanied by Richard Hughes, since the former Scotland cap had been Technical Director of Bournemouth for a couple of years that didn’t seem like a deal breaker but the Daily Record has suggested that there are other issues needing resolved.
Michael Gannon writes:
Record Sport understands the negotiations have hit several stumbling blocks over Howe’s hopes to have his own backroom team alongside him, as well as Bournemouth’s Richard Hughes brought in as director of football.
Celtic are currently going through a revamp behind the scenes with Dominic McKay bringing forward his arrival as chief executive three months with the former rugby boss now due to check in next week. The Hoops had hoped speeding up the restructuring could push along the bid to land their no.1 managerial target.
If that report is accurate it seems like negotiations between Celtic and Howe haven’t got beyond the preliminary stage.
Celtic are closing in on an agreement to name Eddie Howe as the club’s new manager early next week. And the former Bournemouth boss wants Cherries technical director Richard Hughes to join him in Glasgow.
Howe held face-to-face talks with the club’s major shareholder Dermot Desmond in London this week. And the 43-year-old is now ready to commit to a move to Glasgow if the Parkhead hierarchy agree to the structural changes he wants put in place.
Sportsmail understands Howe is prepared to stick with current first-team coaches John Kennedy and Gavin Strachan, but wants former Scotland midfielder Hughes to oversee a restructuring of the football operations.
Former Celtic striker Mark Burchill – now a Bournemouth scout – is also in line for a scouting job after head of football operations Nick Hammond quit his post on Wednesday.
It seems that over the course of a week ‘several stumbling blocks’ have cropped up, time will tell if they can be resolved or if they initial reports were over optimistic.
McKay starts work shadowing Lawwell on April 19, it looks like he’ll be starting at the deep end before going out on his own on July 1.
Re: Eddie Howe’s move to Celtic. A representative for Howe said: ‘There has been significant interest in Eddie from a number of clubs. However, talks of any deal being close are extremely premature. His plan remains to not return to management until the summer at the earliest.’
— Sami Mokbel (@SamiMokbel81_DM) April 7, 2021