Rodgers touted Rangers-linked Michael O'Neill for Premier League in 2016; could now face him in Old Firm derbies

Brendan Rodgers manager of Celtic speaks to the media during the Celtic Press Conference prior to the Group B UEFA Champions League match between Celtic and Bayern Muenchen on October 30,...

Rangers are reportedly considering moving to bring Michael O'Neill to Ibrox.

Michael O'Neill, Manager of Northern Ireland looks dejected following the FIFA 2018 World Cup Qualifier Play-Off: Second Leg between Switzerland and Northern Ireland at St. Jakob-Park on...

Rangers could make a move for Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill – and Celtic's Brendan Rodgers appears to be a huge fan of him.

The Gers sacked manager Pedro Caixinha last month, ending his reign in the Ibrox dugout after just seven months in the job, and the search is on for yet another new manager.

Graeme Murty has started well in his second stint as caretaker manager, but The Telegraph report that Rangers hold an interest in Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill.

Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill during the FIFA 2018 World Cup Qualifier between Northern Ireland and Germany at Windsor Park on October 5, 2017 in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

O'Neill, 48, has worked wonders with Northern Ireland since taking the job in 2011, having only previously managed Brechin City and Shamrock Rovers.

The former Newcastle midfielder has taken Northern Ireland on a remarkable journey, including into the knockout stages of the 2016 European Championships in France.

Now though, after seeing Northern Ireland's 2018 World Cup dream end with a play-off defeat to Switzerland, many believe that O'Neill is set for a move back into club management – and Rangers may be waiting to pounce.

Brendan Rodgers manager of Celtic speaks to the media during the Celtic Press Conference prior to the Group B UEFA Champions League match between Celtic and Bayern Muenchen on October 30,...

Intriguingly, Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers appears to be a huge fan of his fellow countryman, having told the Belfast Telegraph in 2016 that he thinks O'Neill undoubtedly has the ability to manage in the Premier League, calling him 'very talented and very bright'.

“There's no question about that. It is just going to be about opportunity,” said Rodgers. “He has done an outstanding job where he is. I know Michael well and he is a good guy, he is very talented, very bright, he's a good coach and he works with players well and has shown over the Euro 2016 qualifying campaign against the odds he can stimulate a group to perform,” he added.

Whilst Rodgers may have been touting O'Neill for a Premier League job, but he could now be facing him on the touchline in Old Firm derbies in a fascinating narrative between the two great rivals.

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