PO Box 306, Glasgow, G21 2AE, Scotland

so farewell then...

Ian McLeod

So farewell then Ian McLeod
You are no longer with the fans at Celtic Park
On Match days
Or
As you might say yourself
" I have temporarily relocated to a new strategic retail environment."

EJ LURKER
Socio-Economic group B1

Ian McLeod joined Celtic in March 2001 to replace Allan MacDonald as Chief Executive. Flora had had a relatively easy ride by comparison with his predecessor, Jock Brown, on whom Open Season had been declared the minute his name was announced. At McLeod's press conference it was going to be interesting to see what kind of reception he would get from the hacks and how long it would before his 'Celtic-Minded' credentials would be put to the test. It wasn't long before one of them asked the incoming CE to name the Lisbon Lions team. Remember, the same as they asked John McLelland to rhyme off the names of the Barcelona 1972 team?

That brief flurry aside, he had a pretty quiet tenure initially. Which was good, because we've pretty much had it with Suits here at NTV Mansions. Even the Retard's pathetic attempt to trash his reputation with the fans by printing a picture of him clad in a Rangers top exhumed from an old friend's vault didn't really rattle too many cages.

Within six months he had started a campaign to crack down on supporters clubs with unacceptable names and had written to everybody on the Celtic Park database urging them not to sing rebel songs at away games. It's pretty mild stuff, really, but the papers went to town on any scraps they could get and managed to get some mileage out of this stuff.

In fact, McLeod has probably been the best of the lot as far as Executives goes, but when you're being compared to Terry Cassidy and company that's definitely being damned with faint praise.

Nevertheless, on the plus side of his ledger he steadfastly refused to blur the distinction between political and sectarian songs and he wasn't scared to voice a few home truths about the SPL during his latest media spectacular. There is also the small matter of him presiding over an operating profit of 5.3 million last year compared with 0.8 million the year before, so he must have been quite good at his job.

Alas, he had been employed by the likes of Asda and Wal Mart and could never quite rid himself of the jargon. I always got the impression that supporters were never too far from being customers, in his eyes, and that leagues were not there to be gloriously fought over but 'operating environments' in which to relieve supporter/ customers of their disposable income.

He even claimed to have found some supporters... er, customers, who, during one of his meetings (focus groups) actually wanted the price of their season tickets to go up.

Focus Groups were to discuss such burning questions as the colour of strips (Try green and white - quite popular round Celtic Park) and parking facilities (customer relocation points).

Thankfully his departure was short and sweet and lacking the shameful self-justification of MacDonald. The hacks are already digging a pit for his successor, no doubt.

MANFRED LURKER