Assessing five potential Celtic managerial appointments to replace Ronny Deila

A look at potential candidates for the Celtic job.

Celtic confirmed via their website this week that Ronny Deila has agreed to step down from his position as manager.

This decision will come as no surprise to the majority. The list of candidates to replace the outgoing Norwegian also offers few surprises, as the footballing world has been speculating about potential replacements for many months.

David Moyes

First choice by the fans and the media, and favourite with the bookies, he had experienced notable success at Everton, during which he built a stable and successful side capable of finishing in the top four of England’s top division.

His lack of trophies was always noted prior to his appointment at Manchester United which ultimately was short-lived, after this, another brief spell as manager in La Liga at Real Sociedad has left his career, and pride, in tatters. He would surely relish an opportunity to rebuild his career with a former employer during his playing days.

There is rival interest from relegated Aston Villa, and he would also likely require significant funds to rebuild the current Celtic squad. Are the Celtic boardroom ready to loosen the purse strings and alter their stringent business model?

Brendan Rodgers

After a highly successful spell as manager of Swansea, he earned a promotion to manage at Liverpool, replacing former Celtic player and manager Kenny Dalglish in 2012.

He continued to demonstrate his enthusiasm for positive attacking football coming within three games of leading Liverpool to a highly unlikely title win in 2014. However, after a late collapse, the league was lost to Manchester City; Liverpool never fully recovered from the major setback and eventually sacked Rodgers replacing him with Jurgen Klopp earlier this season.

He should still be considered a highly qualified and skilled candidate for the Celtic job and has more to prove as he looks to rebuild his career.

Neil Lennon

After a relatively successful spell previously in charge of Celtic, the former captain departed after four years in 2013 to seek employment in England. His subsequent record, during a spell in the dugout at financially troubled Bolton Wanderers, was woeful.

It is no surprise that he is now itching for a return to the club with which he has so many fond memories. It is however unlikely Celtic would be willing to re-employ a previous manager.

His European record at Celtic was better than Deila’s, however, Celtic stuttered a little domestically even during Rangers’ financial collapse and relegation.

Alan Stubbs

Another former Celtic player, Stubbs has shown promise during his two years managing Hibernian in the Scottish Championship.

Along with an impressive second placed finish ahead of Rangers last season, they have reached both the League Cup and Scottish Cup finals this season.

However, a lack of managerial experience at a higher level is likely to make this choice far too risky and Hibernian’s recent dip in form is likely to make him a largely unappealing choice. Celtic would be wise choosing someone with experience at the top level.

Henrik Larsson

There are few former players who are still the subject of so much devotion from the Celtic support. The former number seven’s name is still regularly chanted at Celtic Park.

With 242 goals during seven illustrious years with the Glasgow giants, he would instantly be welcomed back by the supporters. And if the Celtic board is focused on raising the ticket sales and reducing the number of empty seats at Celtic Park in recent seasons, this would an appealing choice. He has limited managerial experience in Sweden with Falkenbergs and more recently Helsingborg.

However, as with Ronny Deila, he is a young manager with very little experience at the highest level. There would definitely be a huge risk associated with this choice and a poor performance at Celtic may damage the extremely positive rapport he currently has with the Celtic support.

Whomever Celtic choose as Deila’s replacement, significant investment is required, major changes to the backroom stuff and current squad is necessary, and the threat of Aberdeen, Hearts and newly promoted Rangers has to be considered. Next season is going to be a huge challenge, and there is little margin for error when making the decision on the next manager.

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