CELTIC yesterday moved to cure their managerial headache by sending for the doctor, the 62-year-old Slovakian, Josef Venglos.

The team's long-suffering fans will breathe a little easier knowing there will be somebody in charge for their first European match in five days' time.

However, the question on the lips of most of the 200 or so supporters who turned up at Parkhead to greet the mystery man, remained: ''Dr Who?''

The former national team coach of Czechoslovakia, Australia, Malaysia, Oman and Slovakia, who has a doctorate in physical education, may be a household name to half the world, but to the green-and-white faithful, he might as well have landed in Glasgow in a blue Tardis.

Having agreed to take on the least sought-after assignment in Scottish football, Celtic's umpteenth choice of coach can now be assured of either everlasting celebrity or notoriety in the club's hall of fame, although his track record offers few clues as to the likely outcome.

Success with the Czech national side in the 1976 European Championships and with Slovan Bratislava in two national championships must be tempered against his single season at Sporting Lisbon in the early 119980s and a nightmare one-year reign at English Premier club Aston Villa.

Villa's club secretary Steve Stride, who oversaw Dr Venglos's unsuccessful reign at the Midlands outfit during the 1990-91 season, described him as the man who cared too much.

Mr Stride said: ''No-one likes losing football matches but Jo took every defeat to heart, even apologising to me for the team's performances every time we lost.''

He guided Villa to only 17th place in the top flight that year. Despite speaking four languages, he has never mastered English and struggled to communicate with his English players.

Mr Stride added: ''Jo could never quite comprehend how our players could enjoy a beer and socialise with their friends and family barely half an hour after they had lost a game.

''Jo always felt there should be a funereal atmosphere after a defeat. He was never really tuned into the thinking of his backroom staff either. He was never able to establish a rapport with his staff and team.''

Dr Venglos, who was at France 1998 as a coaching adviser to Fifa, said he could not resist the offer from a club like Celtic which was ''embedded in world soccer history''.

Until his work permit arrives, he will be operating in a consultancy capacity.

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