Chris Sutton believes Ange Postecoglou must be Manager of the Year – even if Celtic don’t win the title.
The 56-year-old has overseen a massive transformation at the Parkhead club since arriving in the summer.
Celtic were in turmoil after a disastrous season, as Rangers won the league, but Postecoglou has made an immediate impact.
The Hoops are three points clear at the top of the Premiership table with just seven games remaining.
Postecoglou’s side have already won the League Cup and Sutton has detailed why the Aussie should win the award.
“Ange Postecoglou is the Manager of the Year,” Sutton wrote in his Daily Record column.
“That’s regardless of what happens between now and the end of the season.
“As far as I’m concerned, there’s no point in even starting the voting. Postecoglou’s work at Celtic makes him the outstanding candidate and you’d be as well just handing him the award right now.
“No doubt this statement is going to get folk hot under the collar but, if you are being honest and unbiased, who else can anyone really vote for?
“Celtic were an absolute shambles at the beginning of the season. The club had lost the title by a massive 25 points last season to Rangers.
“It was a one-sided Rangers rout. My old club was a mess. The entire squad needed upheaval. He needed a brand new team.
“Postecoglou was walking into an alien environment and he had to turn around the squad and the mood.
“Not only has he done it, he might just be about to win the title along with it.
“Even if he doesn’t, it has been some turnaround. Let’s face it, no-one, including me, gave him a hope of overcoming Rangers in his first season.
“Postecoglou might well go on and win a Treble.
“But, even if he doesn’t, I’d say he’s Manager of the Year material.”
Although Sutton believes Postecoglou must win the gong, he believes other contenders recognition.
He added: “If Robbie Neilson manages to add a Scottish Cup success to finishing third in the Premiership with Hearts on their return to the top-flight, then that would be a superb effort.
“But as we all know, the voting is concluded before the Scottish Cup Final is played, so that’s going to make him a non starter.
“If there’s one guy who can rip the crown away from Postecoglou, it would be Dick Campbell.
“What he has done at Arbroath this season is absolutely superb.
“To have a part-time team maintain their status in the Championship is a big
“To have them fighting for the title with just a handful of games remaining and having the dream of reaching the top flight still alive at this stage is an incredible effort. If Dick were to win it, I’d change my tune.
“But hand on heart, I just think Kilmarnock will have too much under Derek McInnes.
“And even if Arbroath got through to the play-off Final, I’d see a St Johnstone being too fresh and strong for them over two legs.
“Paul Hartley is doing a fine job with Cove Rangers and looks set to take them up the ladder again and into the second tier.
“Kevin Thomson likewise at Kelty Hearts as they appear destined to win League Two.
“Same as Cove, just because quite a few expected it might happen, it doesn’t mean it’s any less of a great effort from him and his squad.”
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