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‘Nose in the trough’ ‘Downsizing’ ‘Overpaid accountant with zero ambition’ Fans say farewell to Lawwell

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Peter Lawwell steps down as Celtic CEO today with many fans delighted that his 17 year reign is finally over.

When the little known accountant took up his job in October 2003 Celtic had just returned from Seville and were in the middle of an epic Champions League campaign, taking seven points from Anderlecht, Bayern Munich and Lyon. Losing the three away matches by a single goal.

In three weeks’ time a Celtic squad stripped to the bone faces Midtjylland in a Second Round qualifier for the group stage. Two more rounds have to be negotiated to reach the group stage.

Despite being seeded, Celtic under Lawwell have fallen to AEK Athens, Cluj and Ferencvaros in the last three seasons. Lawwell is also toasted in the boardrooms of Malmo, Maribor, Sparta Prague and FC Copenhagen.

Lawwell has been in charge during Celtic’s greatest ever period of domestic success. Before 2016 there hadn’t been a single treble during his reign, that changed quickly as Brendan Rodgers delivered seven out of seven with two more in the pipeline.

What happened to force Rodgers out and the recruitment process that appointed Neil Lennon as successor in the Hampden showers will define the Lawwell Legacy.

As he signs out he can look back on a salary that started at £248,941 with club turnover standing at £69m. In the last normal season, the year to 30 June 2019 turnover was up to £83.4m with Lawwell taking home £3.5m. Had income grown in line with inflation Celtic would have brought in £106.7m, in real terms the outgoing CEO oversaw a drop in come of £23.3m while his salary and bonus soared.

Dom McKay picks up the pieces with a decimated squad, no trophies in the boardroom and a far different proposition to the one Lawwell picked up in October 2003.

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