Report: Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill fancied for Celtic job, despite compensation fee

Celtic are reportedly keen on Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill.

According to The Sun, Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill remains a leading candidate for the Celtic job this summer, despite the fact that the Bhoys would have to pay compensation to land him.

The Bhoys announced on Wednesday that current manager Ronny Deila will leave the club at the end of the season, having stumbled through an underwhelming campaign this year.

Exits from the Champions League, Europa League and Scottish League Cup piled the pressure on the Norwegian, and after his side were beaten by Old Firm rivals Rangers in the Scottish Cup last week, the Celtic board decided to go in a different direction without Deila.

Now, the search begins for a new boss - and The Sun report that Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill is a top contender for the role.

O'Neill, 46, guided Northern Ireland to Euro 2016 after a stunning qualifying campaign, and his stock as a manager has never been higher heading into the tournament this summer.

In fact, O'Neill even signed a new four-year deal in March, with the Daily Mail reporting that there is a release clause in his deal which allows him to manage a club side - but they must be compensated with £750,000.

It seems that Celtic haven't been deterred by that though, with The Sun claiming that Celtic officials are still putting O'Neill in the mix, because he has proven that he doesn't need a top class side to compete with big boys during his time with Northern Ireland - and that's what Celtic will need if they are to enjoy success in Europe again; something which Deila failed to provide in his two years at the club.

Would you like to see O'Neill replace Deila?

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch