Should Ange Stay Or Should He Go? The Future Of Celtic's Title-Winning Manager

Celtic clinched a second title under Postecoglou this weekend
15:00, 08 May 2023

Celtic are the Scottish Premiership champions again. Apart from a Scouse-infused interruption in our scheduled programming a couple of seasons back, this is always the case. The Hoops exist in the role of perpetual dominators, the only question being how good they looked in scooping their annual birthright. Well this season, they looked very good. Manager Ange Postecoglou has them on course to surpass the Scottish top flight points record.

That marker is held by Celtic themselves, who notched 106 points under Brendan Rodgers. That record arrived in the historic 2016/17 season, when Cetlic went 47 dometic games unbeaten and collected a Scottish Premiership, League Cup and Scottish Cup treble. A September loss to St Mirren means Postecoglou’s men can’t eclipse the ‘Invincibles’ in that regard, but as well as the points record, a treble remains on.


A Kyogo Furuhashi brace saw them past Rangers in an Old Firm League Cup final back in February. Postecoglou will lead his side out at Hampden Park on 3rd June for the Scottish Cup final. If they beat Inverness Caledonian Thistle to lift the club’s eighth domestic treble, it will cap a remarkable season. A campaign that will beg the inevitable question; what next?

That question will be most pertinent when it comes to Postecoglou himself. While domestic success is a minimum requirement at Parkhead, the Australian has done it with the sort of style and panache that separates the bog-standard Celtic managers from the very good ones. Now he must choose which path to take from here.

Postecoglou could stay and aim for a place in Celtic folklore. The Australian is well loved at Celtic Park. The players are buying into what he’s selling and are performing with dominance rather than winning by default. It’s all about how you play at this club, rather than just the three points. Like Bayern Munich in Germany or Paris Saint-Germain in France, the lifting of the title is merely an entry fee. Managers earn their keep by producing dazzling teams of carefree front-runners.

With two titles on his mantle already, Postecoglou can build on what he’s created. Given the fact they have numerically claimed the title with four games remaining, and have kept Rangers at arms-length by 13 points, you could argue Ange’s only barrier at this point is complacency. But with Rangers proving a couple of seasons ago that they are capable of competing, and the long-held need for improvement in Europe, there are worlds left for Postecoglou to conquer.


Celtic fans may take it as an insult but there is also plenty for their manager to explore outside the walls of Glasgow. When a Bhoys manager does such an outstanding job, inevitably talk will turn to how they’d handle the English game. It is a sad indictment of the regard in which Scottish football is held but nowadays it is often seen as an audition for the Premier League or even the Championship.

Postecoglou’s excellent work at Celtic means he won’t have to trouble himself with the English second tier, but there will be plenty of Premier League clubs casting their eye over him. While links to the Tottenham Hotspur job seem a tad fanciful, with chairman Daniel Levy reportedly preferring Feyenoord manager Arne Slot, there are plenty of clubs who could benefit from hiring the 57-year-old.

Several clubs are currently working with coaches on a short-term basis. Roy Hodgson of Crystal Palace and Sam Allardyce of Leeds United are 75 and 68 years old respectively and have been deployed to ensure survival rather than execute a long-term plan of action. Palace look safe while Leeds could still survive. Postecoglou would be well-placed to pick up where either man left off and transition these teams to a more proactive style of play aimed at looking up the table, not down.

Dean Smith of Leicester City is younger at 52, but has also been brought in to temporarily mind the shop as the Foxes aim to escape the drop. Leicester have form in taking a high-performing Celtic manager on board and enjoying success in doing so, with Rodgers lifting the FA Cup and qualifying for Europe at the King Power. They could do worse than trying to repeat the trick with Postecoglou.

West Ham United have been credited with an interest in Postecoglou too while Everton were said to have been circling him when they replaced Frank Lampard. With his name on the lips of so many trigger-happy chairman, it would almost be more surprising if he stayed at Celtic at this point. But then immortality is hard to come by in football and a club the size of Celtic offers that to the loyal and successful. Staying the course and pushing the club to new heights, bigger records and greater achievement will richly reward a manager. 

The world does not begin and end with the Premier League. But then, with two Scottish Premiership titles in his back pocket, perhaps Postecoglou feels his race is run north of the border. We will find out in the coming weeks and months. But one thing is for sure, this is no ordinary Celtic manager.

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