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Neil Lennon resigns as Celtic boss

Neil Lennon has quit as Celtic boss to try his hand elsewhere

Neil Lennon has quit as Celtic boss to try his hand elsewhere

Neil Lennon resigned as boss of SPL champions Celtic on Thursday. The Northern Irish boss had helped the Hoops claim three SPL titles in as many years.

Even prior to his Parkhead exit, Lennon was linked with a move to a number of Premier League clubs.

Lennon is believed to have told the Celtic board on Monday that he was set to leave the club, but his exit was not made official until yesterday.

Challenge

Managing Celtic has not been such a challenge since the Hoops lost city-rivals Rangers to the lower leagues. Lennon has always appeared as a fiercely ambitious character.

At Celtic he was never going to get any higher up in the SPL and Celtic simply did not have the resources to compete in the Champions League on regular basis.

Maybe the challenge of managing in England has proved just too tempting for Lennon, although the Northern Irishman has apparently not agreed a deal with anybody as of yet.

Linked

Lennon has been linked with the likes of West Brom, Southampton and Norwich. One of those clubs is currently without a manager and the future of Southampton boss Mauricio Pochettino is highly in doubt, with Tottenham believed to be keen on appointing the Argentinian as their new boss.

Norwich have now handed former-caretaker boss Neil Adams a three-year permanent contract, despite the fact that the former youth team coach was in charge when they were relegated.

West Brom would provide Lennon with a chance of managing in the Premier League. No doubt he would fancy a shot at the big time and West Brom would be a decent place to start his managerial career in England.

Lennon would do far more for his reputation if he got a team promoted from the Championship to the Premier League, than winning another SPL title in what has become a one-horse race.

Struggle

Celtic was always going to struggle to keep hold of their highly-rated boss. Players make their name at Celtic and move onto bigger leagues. The perfect recent examples in recent windows were star striker Gary Hooper and midfielder Victor Wanyama.

When a team continues to sell their best players it is difficult for a manager to build a team. For Lennon losing his best players must have been frustrating, but it did not matter so much in the SPL. In the Champions League it was a completely different story, as the Hoops struggled in the group stage, after making the last 16 the previous season.

Even at Premier League clubs Lennon may not be able to retain his best players, but at least he is more likely to be able to replace them with the funds that their sales bring in, that did not seem to happen at Celtic.

Celtic Boss

There are a number of bosses being linked with the Celtic job. The four favourites for the job are former-Hoops stars. The outright  favourite for the job is Hoops legend Henrik Larsson at odds of 2/1, David Moyes is 10/3, Jackie McNamara is odds of 7/2, while Malky Mackay is 4/1.

Whoever takes the job will inherit a very solid squad, after Lennon did his best to improve his team season after season against all odds sometimes. The next Celtic boss will have a chance of improving their profile at a big club.

Gamble

Neil Lennon has taken a gamble by leaving Celtic and looking to move to elsewhere. He was in a comfortable position at Parkhead, but he deserves credit for being brave and attempting to further his career.

Critics will have always doubted his managerial ability had he stayed in the SPL. Now he has a chance to sink or swim. It is difficult to judge his managerial acumen on managing Celtic, but from the Hoops performances in Europe he could have a bright managerial career elsewhere ahead of him.

Has Neil Lennon made the right decision to leave Celtic?

Fri 23 May, 2014
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