Neil Lennon confirmed as new Celtic manager
Celtic have announced that Neil Lennon has been officially confirmed as the new manager of the club on a 12-month rolling contract.
The Northern Irishman had been offered the position under an hour after helping Celtic to an historic treble treble - following his appointment as interim manager in February following the departure of Brendan Rodgers to Leicester City.
A statement on the official Celtic website, read: “Neil has been connected to Celtic for a number of years, having excelled as both a player and as manager. He made 304 appearances for the club in a playing career which included five Scottish Premier League titles, four Scottish Cups, two League Cups and a UEFA Cup final appearance in Seville in 2003.
“Neil has already enjoyed a very successful spell as Celtic manager from 2010 to 2014, where he guided the club to three Scottish Premier League titles and two Scottish Cup wins, as well as qualifying for the group stages of the UEFA Champions League twice, once reaching the last 16 of European football’s greatest club tournament after a famous win against FC Barcelona.
“Neil took over from Brendan Rodgers in February of this year in an interim role and secured the club’s eighth successive Premiership title in May. And just last week his team sealed the unforgettable Treble Treble with a 2-1 win over Hearts in the Scottish Cup final.”
Following the announcement, Lennon said: “It is a massive honour to be named Celtic manager once again. I had always dreamed of returning to this role on a permanent basis and I am absolutely delighted to once again be part of one of the biggest and best clubs in the world - an institution which really does mean so much to me and one which has always been such a huge part of my life.
“When I was asked to take over in February, I felt it was my duty to do so. Celtic will always be my club and I wanted to help finish the job which had been started.
“I was delighted with the way the players stuck to their task and delivered another historic success, which is unlikely to ever be repeated. I was also delighted to receive such great support from our fans since returning, something for which I will be forever grateful.
“In the space of just a few weeks, Trophy Day at Celtic Park and securing the Treble Treble at Hampden are two of my greatest days in football. The energy, total commitment and passion from our supporters, the effort, the talent and desire from our players. It’s these qualities which make our club great and deliver such historic occasions.
“I want to be part of delivering more of these great days and great achievements and I look forward to working with the players, the staff and the fans to make this happen.”
Celtic Chief Executive Peter Lawwell added: “We’re delighted to name Neil as our new manager. Neil stepped up to the plate and answered our call in February, and in the difficult circumstances, played a huge part in delivering the treble to Celtic.
“We have known Neil as a player, captain, coach and manager. He has brought great success to Celtic in the past and we’re sure he’ll do so again in the future. He’s a Celtic man, a winner and someone we’re delighted again to have as part of the club.
“Neil has a great record in identifying players, and he has already been working hard in this area as we look to strengthen the squad this summer. We’re all looking forward to a positive future together.”
John Kennedy has been appointed as Celtic’s new assistant manager, with Damien Duff continuing in his role as first-team coach.
The appointment of Lennon has split the Celtic support, with some looking at it as a cheap option from the Celtic board and were disappointed to not replace Rodgers with a ‘big name’ signing. While others believed that Lennon deserves the job after helping Celtic in their time of need after Rodgers quit the club for a mid-table Premier League side.
Janefield Street wishes Neil Lennon all the best in the role and hope he can continue to deliver silverware to Celtic and more importantly nine-in-a-row this season, before 10-in-a-row next.