Harry Redknapp..

Thursday 18 February 21
Harry Redknapp wades into Celtic manager debate again!


Harry Redknapp has offered his take on where Eddie Howe could end up.
Redknapp, who managed Tottenham, Southampton and Bournemouth was asked for his view on Eddie Howe, a Premier League return, and Celtic. There are some who may find the non-wheeler-dealer’s old-school takes interesting. Alternatively, it might seem like he’s being wheeled out weekly to advertise his nephew Frank Lampard’s availability. Either way, Redknapp is being approached for his opinions, and he has plenty.
Foremost, he tipped Eddie Howe for a job in the English Premier League. This morning, Redknapp told TalkSport (07:45): “Eddie [Howe] was massive odds-on for the Celtic job a few weeks back. There’s absolutely no chance he’ll go back to Bournemouth. No chance. There will be a Premier League club for Eddie, I think he’ll come back.” Eddie Howe to Celtic probability is fading?

There will be some fantastic opportunities in the Premier League soon.
The ceaseless drama at Newcastle United dictates Steve Bruce might get the heave before too long. Roy Hodgson is unlikely to have his contract renewed at Crystal Palace. On the unlikelier end of the scale, Arsenal may opt for change after a difficult season. Inevitably, there will be big-money, big-budget jobs. As one of the hotter commodities in management, Howe will be top of many shortlists. There’s no concrete evidence to suggest he’s even thinking about Celtic at this point, but he has been linked with the gig [The Sun]. The fans have also gotten behind it too.

But ‘Arry is right to suggest Howe managing in the English top-flight soon is a real possibility. In fairness to Eddie Howe, he seems quite discerning. He’ll think long and hard before launching into a new “project”, to use the terminology of today.

On paper, Howe and Celtic seem like a good partnership. Especially if David Webb is welcomed into the Bhoys’ backroom staff. According to Webb, Howe is the kind of person to bring a family culture to the club, with everyone involved. On the pitch, he plays “the Celtic Way”; high-pressing, fast transitions and attacking play aplenty.
Redknapp’s nephew, meanwhile?
Frank Lampard to Celtic rumours have quietened, and it’s genuinely unclear as to who is the out-and-out favourite amongst the supporters. Perhaps it’s more about change for change’s sake than a particular name in the dugout, at this moment.

My view:
Harry is spot on as usual but is not using his long ongoing relationship with nephew Frank (Lampard) to sway such matters and conversation. I don’t think at this moment in time Frank will want to go face-to-face with Steve Gerrard north of the Great Divide, in football terms, as when I was young the Scots had a massive influence of the “uplifting” of the English game. The most recent true great was Kenny Dalglish – Charlie Nicholas might have been under the right management – and although Mackay lifting a young Billy Bremner by his collar at White Hart Lane brought a different type of edge to it all. What it showed was that they didn’t all stick together when arriving here otherwise a that fantastic partnership of Scot Kenny and Welsh Ian Rush would not have been arguably the best partnership of the lot. On TV we listen to Graeme Souness and know by his manner he not only knows the game but was one of the best to come down here and work his way from Spurs via Middlesbrough to Liverpool to became not only a fierce competitor but as a footballer second-to-none. I played against Graeme at both those last two clubs but it wasn’t until he reached Liverpool, like me at Stoke City, he became the kind of footballer that he so desired to be.
Anyhow, having the great pleasure to have spent time with Jock Stein in Singapore and Sydney, Australia, it is clear these days that Scotland will never see the likes of him again. You only have to look at the managers who have took them nowhere, when Stein, like Clough at Nottingham Forest put their imprints on their clubs to carry off Europe’s top prize, which was the equivalent of what Leicester City carried off three or four seasons ago – without disturbing Europe.
Stein and Shankly onto Ferguson all managers of a certain kind, and knowing George Graham the way I do, I always use the term of “Giving nothing away” which is said to be a Scottish trait.
It most certainly worked at Highbury in George’s reign.

As for Celtic I can only say if I was in a Board Meeting at Celtic Park my input would be the mouth watering prospect of Steve Gerrard versus Frank Lampard once again, only this time on a completely different surface. They faced one another many times in top clashes on English soil but it is at international level that the question has never been answered: “Why couldn’t they play together in the English midfield?”

That debate was caused not by the players but the diabolical management not understanding that you can only play one player in that position and it was a matter of tossing a coin who should have played not can they play together?
I look at the times the brilliant Andrea Pirlo had these two English superstars chasing is shadow at international level when the Italian walked through a certain European Championship match as if having a cigar in one hand a glass of his favourite ‘claret’ in the other.
Wasn’t it strange as an Italian Pirlo, now managing Juventus, would have known from the outset that these two should never be on the same field together – in the same coloured shirt.
And it was ironic that England had an Italian manager at the time of such a debate, it wouldn’t have happened in Italy.

Going back to that Board Meeting we could stir up the next saga of the Gerrard and Lampard debate which I think would capture the imagination of those who never look north of the border at 5pm on a Saturday afternoon.