Roy Keane has the ‘personality’ required to lead Celtic going forward, according to former Hoops manager Martin O’Neill.
O’Neill, who led Celtic to three Scottish titles and a UEFA Cup final over five years in Glasgow, was speaking to BBC Scotland Sportsound.
O’Neill seems to fear that it would be a mistake to overlook the 49-year-old, who has worked under the ex-Hoops boss as assistant manager in the Republic of Ireland and Nottingham Forest setups.
£30m Champions League prize on the line for Celtic
“Next season is really big because it’s automatic qualification for the Champions League,” O’Neill said.
“That’s a massive extra prize. It’s the 30 million. Maybe it bolsters the argument that Celtic are taking their time – that whoever is in there is able and capable of facing Rangers in the big contest.
“Roy Keane’s got the personality, for a start. A massive player, iconic figure in the game. He’s also very strong-willed. But he’s got the capacity to motivate the players.
“Roy’s learned a great deal over the years. Dermot [Desmond, Celtic’s principal shareholder] is a strong-willed man himself. He’ll know what is necessary.”
Keane has been out of the managerial hotseat since 2011, when he left Ipswich Town.
Whoever succeeds Neil Lennon at Celtic Park faces a daunting task. The Hoops trail their arch-rivals Rangers by a full 20 points in the table, and Steven Gerrard’s men have not lost a league game all season.
Transfer Tavern verdict
With £30m potentially on the line as O’Neill has outlined, Celtic probably shouldn’t be taking this big a gamble on their next manager.
Eddie Howe, who did a remarkable job at Bournemouth and is now the favourite for the job, would appear a more sensible appointment, given his impressive track record at Premier League level in recent times.
Click here to comment on this articleor
Give us feedback on your Football Transfer Tavern experience