Celtic are looking for Neil Lennon’s long-term replacement and John Collins believes the Glasgow giants could do worse than to consider Red Bull Salzburg boss Jesse Marsch, speaking to talkSPORT (25 February, 9am).
While limp, insipid defeats became a regular tradition during the final few months of the Lennon era, Marsch’s teams at least know how to lose in style.
That Champions League clash at Anfield in October 2019 will live long in the memory; an exhilarating, energetic Salzburg side coming back from 3-0 down to give Liverpool an almighty scare on their own hallowed turf before Mo Salah’s late winner.
That stirring performance catapulted Marsch, the first American ever to coach a team in Europe’s premiere club competition, into the wider consciousness.
And with Celtic looking for a coach capable of steering a sinking ship into calmer waters, many have suggested that the Wisconsin-born 47-year-old is worth considering.
“A name I’ll throw into the hat; Jesse Marsch. Sometimes when you sit and watch the Champions League on Tuesday or Wednesday nights, you see a performance that sticks with you,” says Collins, who played over 200 league games for Celtic in the 1990s.
“I remember watching (Salzburg) play at Anfield; 3-0 down after 36 minutes. They brought it back to 3-3 and lost 4-3 and I thought; ‘wow, that’s a good football coach.’
“Probably people in England have never seen Salzburg but that performance stuck in my mind.”
Marsch is about more than gallant defeats, of course.
The former New York Red Bull boss dominated the Austrian landscape last season, guiding Salzburg to a leagne and cup double while working wonders with the likes of Takumi Minamino, Dominik Szoboszlai and Erling Braut Haaland.
Though, as Collins points out, there is no shortage of alternatives for a Celtic side in need of a reset.
“Roberto Martinez; very similar to Brendan (Rodgers). His teams play good football, attacking football, ball on the deck,” he adds.
“Eddie Howe; no matter what anybody says, the job he did at Bournemouth was fantastic. Going up against the big boys, trying to play good football, playing out from the back, he’s proved he can play good football.
“Frank Lampard; a good football brain, harshly treated with Celtic. He works with young players and develops them.”