Celtic’s 18th Manager (2014-16) – Ronny Deila, so unlucky in three semi-finals

Norwegian Ronny Deila was Manager of Celtic for two years. He is however hard to classify as either a “good” Manager or a “bad” one. In fact he is probably the most difficult of the lot to analyse.

 Ronny Deila Celtic manager arrives at the ground met by fans at the Scottish Premiership Match between Celtic and Inverness Caley Thistle at Celtic Park on May 24, 2015 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Jeff Holmes/Getty Images)

Maley and Stein were good. Brady, Mowbray and Barnes were awful and the rest are somewhere to the positive or the negative. But Ronnie Deila? He won 3 domestic trophies out of 6, he had some real bad luck in semi-finals, his European record was dreadful too (but so is the record of most Celtic managers!) and the antipathy that he aroused in the support was sometimes quite amazing.

 Ronny Deila the manager of Celtic chats with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer the head coach of Molde prior to kickoff during the UEFA Europa League Group A match between Celtic FC and Molde FK at Celtic Park on November 5, 2015. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

His two League winning seasons, of course, were done without the opposition of (the)Rangers, still starting again in the lower Leagues doing penance for the old club’s financial mismanagement, corruption and other more grievous sins, like cheating the Inland Revenue.

The only opposition to speak of was Aberdeen, a club with the more or less permanent ability to blow up when their supporters needed them to do otherwise. They were not without their good players, but Celtic defeated them by 17 points and 15 points respectively, even though in the second of the two seasons, 2015/16 Aberdeen in early February came within a few points of Celtic and their supporters exhibited a banner saying “We’re coming to get you”. Their collapse however was as miserable as it was predictable.

Celtic manager Ronny Deila reacts at the final whistle as Celtic beat Motherwell 2-1 to move 8 point clear at the top of the Scottish Premiership, during the match between Celtic FC and Motherwell FC at Fir Park on April 9, 2016  (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

In domestic Cup competitions, Celtic won the Scottish League Cup of 2014/15 by beating Dundee United in the final, but lost three semi-finals, all of them unluckily. It was the Scottish Cup semi final defeat to Rangers in 2016 that guaranteed his departure, but yet it was only by a penalty shoot out. And he is the only Manager to have a 100% record in winning the Scottish League!

Manager Ronny Deila of Celtic Glasgow talks to Mikael Lustig during a break on the touchline during the Pre Season Friendly between SK Rapid Wien and Celtic Glasgow at Gerhard-Hanappi-Stadium on July 6, 2014 in Vienna, Austria. (Photo by Christian Hofer/Getty Images)

Ronny was always a likeable character with his “Ronny Roar” after a good result. This involved punching the air three times with his left hand and was much enjoyed by the crowd.

David Potter

Ronny Deila during the UEFA Europa League Group A match between Celtic FC and Molde FK at Celtic Park on November 5, 2015


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About Author

I am Celtic author and historian and write for The Celtic Star. I live in Kirkcaldy and have followed Celtic all my life, having seen them first at Dundee in March 1958. I am a retired teacher and my other interests are cricket, drama and the poetry of Robert Burns.

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