ANY football writer who has plied their trade in Scotland can only claim to be worth their salt if they have had at least one knock-back in person from Dermot Desmond.

Whether it’s been on the steps of Celtic Park as he is rushed through the front entrance before a (usually big) game or at a golf course, never a council one, when the Irish billionaire has just finished his round during a charity event.

The rebuttal is always incredibly polite and, more often than not, the journalist is thanked for asking the question even if there was more chance of Satan skating to work than getting a quote. They are then sent on their way. There is no point in badgering the man.

Indeed, a former colleague and old chum tells a story of how he approached Desmond at the Augusta National one year, introduced himself, and asked if he could have a minute or two to chat about the famous Glasgow Celtic.

Desmond, with impeccable manners, said no, of course, and the would-be interrogator toddled off. Then he had a think, turned on heels, which are actually banned at Augusta, and marched back up to the man. It went something like this.

“Mr Desmond, at the last five Masters I have asked you for an interview and you’ve said no every time.”

“And I very much look forward to giving you the same answer next year.”

You have to admit it’s a pretty good line.

Desmond doesn’t need publicity nor does he desire it. I’m quite sure no journalist has his trust never mind a working phone number. When you have an estimated £2billion in the bank, why make time for the likes of myself.

You could argue he should be more public about Celtic but that’s an argument you are never going to win.

Ah, but he did just that back in April exactly at the time Arsene Wenger announced he was leaving Arsenal and almost immediately Brendan Rodgers was installed at the top of the list to replace the Frenchman.

Desmond took time out of his putting practice, it was a Pro-Am of something such as that, to speak to a television camera about Rodgers, which he didn’t need to do and normally runs a mile from an interview.

He said: “I’m glad that he’s the favourite because he deserves to be the favourite. He’s an outstanding person and we wouldn’t like him to leave. But we can’t force anybody to stay and hopefully his love for the club, and the set-up there, will induce him to stay at Celtic.”

Desmond wouldn’t have spoken out like this about Martin O’Neill or Gordon Strachan. So why did he feel the need to go public about the current Celtic manager when, truth be told, there was zero chance of Rodgers being offered a job in north London.

Was it a reminder about who the boss is at Celtic Park, about who really holds the power and makes the biggest decisions?

For me, it was the big DD saying to all that Celtic is bigger than everyone, yes even a manager as popular and successful as Rodgers, and the club would carry on just find if the Northern Irishman did indeed move on to Arsenal.

Desmond, I am sure, does not need to know the minor details of how Celtic is run, but the big decisions both financial and in terms of who the next manager is, comes under his remit.

When you’ve pumped so much money into a business, including the £6m he reportedly spent on the training ground, you get to have a say in the big stuff.

Peter Lawwell is an employee, albeit as powerful a chief executive as you will find in British football. However, he has bosses and it’s the rich bloke from Dublin, the largest individual shareholder at the football club, who sits top of the tree.

What Dermot says, goes. It’s as simple as that at Celtic. And if Rodgers is unhappy with the way the transfers are done, it’s not Lawwell he’s fallen out with.

Celtic fly out to Lithuania today and they would rather not. They want to be in the Champions League, not playing Suduva to then play Thursday-Sunday more or less until the end of this year for a pittance compared to what they made over the last two years.

They will win this play-off and reach the group stage, which is part of the Celtic grand plan. This is not a club which budgets for the Champions League. They will not throw about money to earn some plus points from the supporters so the might get past the likes of AEK Athens.

From Desmond to chairman Iain Bankier to Lawwell, this is the way Celtic are run and, so far, it’s worked pretty well, had it not? Why change because of a couple of badly defended set-pieces?

The Celtic support don’t quite know what to make of their club right now. Sure, it’s been a wonderful couple of years but there is a frustration, which I understand, about why, in the words of the manager, they have not strengthened when in such a fantastic decision.

The reason is that long after Rodgers goes, Desmond, the board, most likely Lawwell, and the club as an entity will remain and the structure won’t be bent even for a guy who has made so much history.

If Rodgers does want to stay longer, and the rumblings from within suggest he does, then he would do well to remember there is a reason Celtic are in such a good position and it began long before Rodgers was even at Liverpool.

And the Celtic fans, some of them at least, could do with a shake. Their team are going to be in Europe until Christmas, there are some excellent players in that squad, Rangers have been rejuvenated so beating them, if that’s what is going to happen, will be so much more fun.

Rodgers can moan and get support for what he says but not a lot will change. What will is that deals such as the John McGinn one are taken care of quickly and successfully.

Apart from that, a certain Irishman rather likes the way Celtic go about their business. Everyone would do well to remember that.