List of Celtic F.C. managers

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Photograph taken of Jock Stein in the early 1970s
Jock Stein is considered to be Celtic's greatest manager.

Celtic Football Club is a Scottish association football club based in Glasgow. The club was founded in 1887 and played their first match in May 1888.[1] Celtic have won the Scottish League Championship on 48 occasions, the Scottish Cup 37 times and the Scottish League Cup 16 times.[2] The club enjoyed their greatest successes during the 1960s and 1970s under Jock Stein when they won nine consecutive league titles and the European Cup.

This chronological list comprises all those who have held the position of manager of the first team of Celtic since its foundation in 1887. Each manager's entry includes the dates of tenure and the club's overall competitive record in terms of matches won, drawn and lost, and of major honours won. Caretaker managers are also included.

As of the start of 2016–17 season, Celtic have had 18 different full-time managers. Willie Maley, the club's first manager, is the longest to have served in the post, having managed the club from 1897 to 1940. The 30 major honours Maley won during his tenure are the most a manager has achieved at Celtic. Jock Stein is considered the club's greatest manager, having revived the team after many years in the doldrums.[3][4] He managed Celtic to nine consecutive league titles and led them to their European Cup Final triumph over Inter Milan in 1967.

Managerial history

1888–1965

For the first few years following its formation, the administrative and team selection duties at Celtic were performed by a committee. Willie Maley had played for the team since their inaugural match in May 1888, and on his retirement at the age of 29 was appointed secretary-manager in April 1897, effectively becoming the team's first ever manager.[5][6] His role was quite different to the modern style of manager or head coach; he never worked with his players in training and only watched games from the director's box. He did not perform team talks or speak with the players at half time or immediately post-match.[7] Having been a club that initially relied on buying in experienced players, Maley instead concentrated on developing young talent.[8] This proved a success as Celtic won six consecutive league titles in the first decade of the 20th century.[9] In 1907 the team also became the first Scottish side win a league and cup double.[10] The next decade saw Maley lead Celtic to a further four successive league titles between 1914 and 1917,[1] during which time they went on an unbeaten run for 62 games from 13 November 1915 until 21 April 1917.[11][12] This remains a British record for an unbeaten run in professional football.[11] Towards the end of his reign, Maley led Celtic to further League titles in 1936 and 1938 and the Scottish Cup in 1937.[9] He remained in his post for almost 43 years, the longest serving manager in the club's history, and guided the team to 30 major trophies.[5][9][13]

Jimmy McStay, who made over 400 appearances for Celtic as a player and captained the side, was appointed manager in 1940. However, his tenure would be during the war years, a period when Scottish football suffered huge disruption. He also had to contend with increased boardroom interference, which he never managed to quell. The result was stagnation with little tangible success.[5] In the summer of 1945, McStay reluctantly resigned at the behest of the board[14] and was succeeded by another celebrated former player, Jimmy McGrory.[5] The early years of his reign were very poor, and in 1948 the club only narrowly avoided relegation.[15] Matters improved in the early 1950s with the Coronation Cup win in 1953 and a league and cup double in 1954.[5] He also led Celtic to their famous 7–1 Scottish League Cup Final win over Rangers in 1957, still a record score-line in a major British cup final.[16] His time as manager, however, is considered largely a period of underachievement, and with chairman Robert Kelly's domineering influence in the running of the club, many questioned how much say McGrory had in team selection.[5][15][17]

1965–1991

Statue of Jock Stein holding the European Cup
Jock Stein was the first British football manager to win the European Cup, leading Celtic to victory over Inter Milan in 1967.
Photograph of Billy McNeill takan in the early 1980s
Billy McNeill had two spells as manager of Celtic, having also captained the side to their European Cup win in 1967 as a player.

Jock Stein left Hibernian to become manager of Celtic in 1965, with McGrory taking on the role of the club's Public Relations Officer.[18] As a player, he had previously captained Celtic to their league and cup double success in 1954,[19] and then as manager led Dunfermline to a famous cup final win over Celtic in 1961.[20] On succeeding from McGrory, Stein took full control of all team matters.[21] Stein is considered a football visionary; transforming a side lacking direction and having gone almost eight years without a trophy into the best team in Europe, all whilst playing entertaining adventurous football.[5] In contrast to his predecessors, Stein was actively involved in his players training – a "tracksuit manager".[22][23] And whereas training had previously consisted of mainly running around the track, Stein introduced practicing with the ball into training.[22] A Scottish Cup Final win was achieved within weeks of taking up the reigns as manager,[24] followed in 1966 by the first of nine consecutive league championship wins.[25][26] In his second full season as manager, Stein led Celtic to success in all five competitions they took part in (a "quintuple"),[27] most memorably their 2–1 win in Lisbon over Inter Milan in the 1967 European Cup Final.[28] Stein led Celtic to a further European Cup final in 1970, knocking out Benfica and Leeds United en route, but lost to Feyenoord 2–1 after extra time in the final.[29] Stein was seriously injured in a car accident in July 1975 and spent the next year recuperating, with assistant manager Sean Fallon taking over managerial duties for the season.[30][31] On his return in season 1976–77, Stein led Celtic to a league and cup double; these would be the last honours he would win at Celtic.[30] After winning 25 major trophies,[5] Stein finally relinquished his role in 1978.[30]

In 1978 former player and captain of the European Cup winning team, Billy McNeill took over as manager, having spent the previous season managing Aberdeen.[32] He brought the league title back to Parkhead in his first season, clinching the championship in their final match of the season with a 4–2 win over Rangers.[33] A Cup Final win in 1980[34] was followed by back-to-back titles in 1981 and 1982.[35] A public row however with the board over a contract and funds for new players resulted in McNeill leaving the club in 1983.[35][36] At only 35 years old, Davie Hay succeeded McNeill.[5] A frustrating first season saw Celtic finish runners-up in each of the domestic competitions.[5] Success did eventually arrive though, winning the centenary Scottish Cup in 1985[37] and then a famous last day championship win at Love Street in 1986, defeating St Mirren 5–0 whilst title rivals Hearts lost at Dundee, securing the league on goal difference.[38] Hay was unable to cope with high spending Rangers the following year, and on failing to win any trophies was sacked by the club.[39][40] Billy McNeill dramatically returned to the club in the summer of 1987[40] and went on to lead the club to a league and cup double in its centenary season of 1987–88.[41] A further Cup Final win followed in 1989,[42] but the club went into a dramatic decline after that.[43][44] After two seasons without any honours, McNeill was sacked in 1991.[44]

1991–2000

Former Republic of Ireland international, Liam Brady, became the first Celtic manager who had never previously played for the club.[5] He failed to win any trophies in his first two seasons or reach any cup finals, and with no progress apparent into this third season he resigned in October 1993.[5] Frank Connor took interim charge for several matches,[45] before Lou Macari was appointed manager.[5] Despite defeating Rangers 2–1 at Ibrox in his first match, results otherwise failed to improve.[5] Fergus McCann took over as owner of Celtic in March 1994 and duly sacked Macari three months later.[5] Following Macari's sacking, Tommy Burns was appointed manager in the summer of 1994.[46] Celtic won their first trophy in six years at the end of the season, beating Airdrie 1–0 in the Scottish Cup final.[5] However, this was an era of domestic dominance by Rangers and despite an outstanding second season in 1995–96 where only one league match was lost, Burns could still finish only second in the league behind the Ibrox club.[5] Despite expensive players arriving at Parkhead,[47] Celtic remained unable to overhaul Rangers the following season in 1997.[5] After losing to Falkirk in the semi-final of the Scottish Cup, Burns was sacked and his assistant Billy Stark took charge for the few remaining games of the season.[48]

In the summer of 1997, former European Cup winner and Dutch international, Wim Jansen, became head coach.[1] Despite losing his first two games of the season,[49] Jansen quickly turned things round and won the club's first Scottish League Cup in 15 years when they beat Dundee United 3–0 in the final.[5] A tightly fought league campaign saw Celtic clinch the title on the final day of the season, stopping Rangers' bid for 10 league titles in a row.[5] However it had by then become known that Jansen was disgruntled with Celtic Managing Director, Jock Brown, and he quit in the immediate aftermath of Celtic's title win.[50] Veteran Slovak coach Jozef Vengloš arrived at Celtic for the following season. A poor start to the season put Vengloš under pressure, but the arrival of new signings and a 5–1 win over Rangers in the league gave rise to optimism. However the league deficit was too much to claw back and a Scottish Cup final defeat to Rangers sealed a largely disappointing season.[5] The summer of 1999 saw the arrival of Kenny Dalglish as Director of Football and John Barnes as head coach.[5] A bright start soon faded as Celtic began to drop vital points in the league.[5] A shock Cup defeat at home to Inverness Caledonian Thistle saw Barnes sacked and Dalglish taking over as caretaker manager for the rest of the season.[5] Celtic did win the League Cup,[5] but slumped in the league and finished 21 points behind winner's Rangers.[51]

2000–present

Photograph of Martin O'Neill
Martin O'Neill won the domestic treble in his first season as manager and led Celtic to the UEFA Cup Final in 2003, their first European final in over 30 years.

Martin O'Neill, a former European Cup winner as a player with Nottingham Forest, took charge of the club in June 2000.[52] Under his leadership, Celtic won three SPL championships out of five[53] and in his first season in charge, the club also won the domestic treble,[54] making O'Neill only the second Celtic manager to do so after Jock Stein.[55] In 2003, O'Neill led Celtic to their first European final since 1970, pitted against F.C. Porto in the UEFA Cup Final in Seville.[5] Celtic lost 3–2 after extra time, despite two goals from Henrik Larsson during normal time.[56] The conduct of the thousands of travelling Celtic supporters received widespread praise from the people of Seville and the fans were awarded Fair Play Awards from both FIFA and UEFA "for their extraordinarily loyal and sporting behaviour".[57][58] O'Neill left Celtic in May 2005 to care for his ill wife.[59]

Gordon Strachan was announced as O'Neill's replacement in June 2005 and after winning the SPL title in his first year in charge,[60] he went on to become only the third Celtic manager to win three titles in a row. He also guided Celtic to their first UEFA Champions League knockout stage in 2006–07[61] and repeated the feat in 2007–08[62] before departing the club in May 2009, after failing to win the SPL title.[63] Tony Mowbray took charge of the club in June 2009,[64] and he was succeeded a year later by Neil Lennon.[65] Celtic narrowly lost out to Rangers in the league in Lennon's first season in charge, but he did gain consolation by defeating Motherwell 3–0 in the 2011 Scottish Cup Final. Lennon went on to win three league titles in a row, then announced his departure from the club in May 2014 after four years in the role.[66]

Norwegian Ronny Deila was appointed manager of Celtic on 6 June 2014.[67][68][69] He went on to lead Celtic to two consecutive league titles and a League Cup, but the team's performances in European competition were poor. Following being knocked out of the Scottish Cup by Rangers in April 2016, Deila announced he would leave the club at the end of the season.[70][71] On 20 May 2016, Brendan Rodgers was announced as Deila's successor, becoming the eighteenth full-time manager of Celtic.[71][72] His first season saw the team go on a long unbeaten run in domestic competitions, during which time the club won their 100th major trophy, defeating Aberdeen 3–0 in the League Cup Final in November 2016,[73] and clinched their sixth successive league title in April 2017 with a record eight league games to spare.[74] Celtic finished their league campaign undefeated (with a record 106 points), the first time a Scottish top-flight side had done so since 1899.[75]. On 27 May 2017, Celtic won their fourth treble by defeating Aberdeen 2–1 in the Scottish Cup final. This resulted in Brendan Rodgers following Jock Stein and Martin O'Neill as treble winning Celtic managers, as well as securing an unprecedented domestic season unbeaten.[76]

Managers

Information correct as of match played 27 May 2017. Only official Scottish League, Scottish Cup, Scottish League Cup and European Competition matches are counted

Key

* Caretaker manager
List of Celtic F.C. managers[5][77]
Name From To Record Honours Ref
P W D L Win % LG FA LC EC
Scotland Maley, WillieWillie Maley April 1897 January 1940 1,616 1,041 315 260 064.42 16 14 [78]
Scotland McStay, JimmyJimmy McStay February 1940 July 1945 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 0 0 [79]
Scotland McGrory, JimmyJimmy McGrory August 1945 March 1965 849 422 178 249 049.71 1 2 2 0 [80]
Scotland Stein, JockJock Stein March 1965 August 1978 690 484 111 95 070.14 10 8 6 1 [81]
Republic of Ireland Fallon, SeanSean Fallon* July 1975 May 1976 53 32 8 13 060.38 0 0 0 0 [82]
Scotland McNeill, BillyBilly McNeill August 1978 May 1983 257 165 40 52 064.20 3 1 1 0 [83]
Scotland Hay, DavidDavid Hay May 1983 May 1987 209 119 50 40 056.94 1 1 0 0 [84]
Scotland McNeill, BillyBilly McNeill May 1987 May 1991 197 109 41 47 055.33 1 2 0 0 [83]
Republic of Ireland Brady, LiamLiam Brady June 1991 October 1993 126 68 31 27 053.97 0 0 0 0 [85]
Scotland Connor, FrankFrank Connor* October 1993 4 3 1 0 075.00 0 0 0 0 [86]
Scotland Macari, LouLou Macari October 1993 June 1994 34 12 14 8 035.29 0 0 0 0 [87]
Scotland Burns, TommyTommy Burns July 1994 May 1997 140 78 39 23 055.71 0 1 0 0 [88]
Scotland Stark, BillyBilly Stark* May 1997 3 2 1 0 066.67 0 0 0 0 [89]
Netherlands Jansen, WimWim Jansen July 1997 May 1998 51 33 10 8 064.71 1 0 1 0 [90]
Slovakia Vengloš, JozefJozef Vengloš July 1998 June 1999 50 29 10 11 058.00 0 0 0 0 [91]
England Barnes, JohnJohn Barnes June 1999 February 2000 29 19 2 8 065.52 0 0 0 0 [92]
Scotland Dalglish, KennyKenny Dalglish* February 2000 June 2000 18 10 4 4 055.56 0 0 1 0 [93]
Northern Ireland O'Neill, MartinMartin O'Neill June 2000 May 2005 282 213 29 40 075.53 3 3 1 0 [94]
Scotland Strachan, GordonGordon Strachan May 2005 May 2009 203 132 36 35 065.02 3 1 2 0 [95]
England Mowbray, TonyTony Mowbray June 2009 March 2010 45 23 9 13 051.11 0 0 0 0 [96]
Northern Ireland Lennon, NeilNeil Lennon March 2010 May 2014 227 159 29 39 070.04 3 2 0 0 [97]
Norway Deila, RonnyRonny Deila June 2014 May 2016 118 75 23 20 063.56 2 0 1 0 [98]
Northern Ireland Rodgers, BrendanBrendan Rodgers May 2016 Present 59 46 8 5 077.97 1 1 1 0 [99]

Notes

  • Win% in statistics table is rounded to two decimal places.
  • All games played under the term of Jimmy McStay, were unofficial War-Time games. Although there were still competitions; Scottish Southern League, Scottish Southern League Cup and Summer Cup, none of these competitions are recognised as official.[100]
  • Sean Fallon's season as caretaker manager in season 1975–77 was due to Jock Stein's recuperation from injuries sustained in a serious car accident.[30][31]
  • Neil Lennon initially took over from Tony Mowbray as manager in March 2010 on a temporary basis, but was appointed as full-time manager in June 2010.[101]

References

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