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Celtic History: A Lookback at Ronny Deila's Two Year Spell at Parkhead

Discussion in 'News' started by TC News, May 18, 2020.

Discuss Celtic History: A Lookback at Ronny Deila's Two Year Spell at Parkhead in the News area at TalkCeltic.net.

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    Nov 28, 2017
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    Celtic History: A Lookback at Ronny Deila's Two Year Spell at Parkhead

    Following the departure of Neil Lennon in May 2014, many Celtic fans were understandably excited to see which manager would succeed the outgoing Northern Irishman. Although the betting odds suggested otherwise, the club opted for Ronny Deila; a young hungry manager with a growing reputation. The Norwegian was described as the man to build the club's future, and had also been endorsed by fellow countryman Arild Stavram, who explained to reporters that he was "great with young players" and was also an expert at "helping teams develop". He'd previously enjoyed a title-winning campaign with unfancied Stromsgodset, and had also managed to guide the top-flight club to their first NFF Norwegian Cup success in over two decades.

    Celtic had been dominating in the Scottish Premiership for a number of years, and with this trend expected to continue, Deila's main target was to help improve the club's fortunes in Europe.

    First Season in Charge

    Deila began his tenure with a fairly unremarkable 1-0 victory against KR Reykjavik in the Second Qualifying Round of the UEFA Champions League, before overseeing a straightforward second leg victory at Parkhead seven days later. Deila's men were then outclassed by Legia Warsaw in the following round of the competition, however, it was later discovered that the Polish side had fielded an ineligible player. This resulted in Celtic being reinstated to the competition, although this good fortune was short-lived as they were subsequently defeated by Maribor in following round.

    The new boss won his first domestic game in charge against St. Johnstone, and his good start continued with a scintillating display against Dundee United at Celtic Park. Their rampant performance left many fans purring, with Stefan Johansen, Jo Inge Berget and Jason Denayer all getting on the scoresheet. However, despite receiving plenty of plaudits for their excellent start to the SFPL season, the Bhoys failed to build upon their early success, losing at Inverness in late August before slipping up against Hamilton six weeks later. Some newspapers were already suggesting that the Norwegian was 'out of his depth', with Celtic's inconsistent performances understandably concerning a section of the home support.

    Despite some initial teething problems, the Hoops suffered just four defeats during Deila's first season in charge, and he duly delivered his first piece of silverware in mid-March. It was the club's first League Cup success since 2009, although they were rarely required to get out of first gear against an insipid and underwhelming Dundee United outfit.

    The Premiership title was secured at the beginning of May with Deila's men racking up five consecutive clean sheets to help put the gloss on fairly successful campaign.

    Second Season in Charge

    Deila recruited a number of players in the summer of 2015 with Scott Allan, Ryan Christie, Carlton Cole, and Dedryck Boyata all arriving in Glasgow. The latter was signed from Manchester City, and had already been capped by Belgium at youth level. He was an exciting addition to the squad, and plenty was expected of the 24-year old, who has subsequently represented his country at the 2018 FIFA World Cup. He was generally viewed as one of the Norwegian's most successful signings having featured 90 times for the club. He is now plying his trade in the Bundesliga and will be hoping to feature for the Red Devils at Euro 2021. As of May 9th 2020, Roberto Martinez's side are 11/2 second favourites with Betway to secure their first success in the competition.

    Boyata and his fellow new arrivals were unable to guide Celtic to the Champions League group stage, with Deila's side crashing out to Malmo in the play-off round. They were also unable to progress in the Europa League, finishing bottom of the group, and the pressure was beginning to mount on the Porsgrunn-born boss.

    For the second consecutive season, Celtic suffered just four league defeats throughout the duration of the campaign, although it was their failure to progress in Europe, coupled with a hugely underwhelming Scottish Cup semi-final defeat to Rangers which invariably led Deila to tender his resignation in mid-April. Despite his perceived failure, the Norwegian still managed to guide his side to back-to-back Premiership titles. Although, the lack of atmosphere inside the ground, and a plethora of empty seats, strongly suggested that his lacklustre spell in charge had potentially left a large number of supporters disenfranchised.

    He ended his tenure with a 65% win rate, and won 78 of his 118 games in charge.

    Post Celtic

    Following his departure, Deila returned to his native Norway, signing a four-year contract with Valerenga. He spent the majority of his first season is Oslo battling relegation and, despite guiding them to a respectable eighth-place finish, he was unable to match his pre-season ambitions of breaking into the top three.

    At the beginning of 2020, the 44-year old took over at New York City FC, penning a three-year contract with the popular Major League Soccer franchise. His latest employers opened the campaign with back-to-back 1-0 defeats.