The late, great David Potter started a feature of writing about a Player of the Day from Celtic’s illustrious history. In order to do continue that legacy and pay a small tribute to David, we will continue profiling a Celtic Player of the Day…
Despite being born in Stirling, Caldwell came through the Newcastle Academy from 2001-2004 before making a permanent switch to Hibs in 2004. Following his success at Easter Road, the player was signed on a free transfer by Gordon Strachan at Celtic in the summer of 2006 after agreeing a pre-contract. This was somewhat underwhelming as whilst he was a quality player in Scotland, it was not seen as being a marquee signing that fans had maybe hoped for.
Strachan was a big fan of Caldwell, who was nicknamed ‘Heid’ by supporters, and the manager resisted groans from the supporters whenever he made mistakes at the back.This paid off for Strachan as across the piece, it is fair to say that Caldwell was a decent player for Celtic. There were a few issues with comments in the press attributable to Caldwell but these have seemingly been forgotten with time.
Caldwell enjoyed success with Celtic winning four trophies, including two titles, one League Cup and one Scottish Cup. In the 2008-09 season, he won a number of personal accolades for his individual performances for Celtic and Scotland. His most memorable moments include his involvement in assists against Rangers in 2007/08 when he clipped two passes, which resulted in goals.
After 151 appearances in his three-and-a-half-year stay in Glasgow, the defender’s seeming reluctance to sign a new deal paved the way for his departure for Wigan Athletic, who paid £1m for his services. Caldwell ended up playing over 100 games for Wigan as well as winning the FA Cup in a move that helped ‘Heid’ transition into coaching after his retirement aged just 32 due to injuries.
From February 2015, Caldwell was on the coaching staff within Wigan’s Academy but was promoted to manager of the first team in April of that year but was unable to help them drop out of the Championship. He did, however, win the League One title before being dismissed in October 2016. Spells as manager of Chesterfield and Partick Thistle followed as well as a brief stint as Shaun Maloney’s No.2 at Hibs before Caldwell resumed being a manager with Exeter City.