Neil Lennon leaves position as manager of Bolton Wanderers

Lennon's exit has reignited speculation of him returning to Celtic Park. Picture: Jane Barlow
Lennon's exit has reignited speculation of him returning to Celtic Park. Picture: Jane Barlow
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Bolton have parted company with Neil Lennon just days after Dean Holdsworth’s takeover.

Wanderers are bottom of the table and 11 points from safety following Saturday’s 2-1 home defeat by Preston. They have won just four league games all season and former Celtic manager Lennon departs having won just 18 times in 80 matches in charge.

A club statement read: “Bolton Wanderers can announce that the club have today, Tuesday 15 March, parted company with manager Neil Lennon by mutual consent.

“All at Bolton Wanderers would like to thank Neil for his contributions during his time at the club.

“Academy manager Jimmy Phillips will take charge of the first team on an interim basis.”

Bolton go to Bristol City on Saturday under new ownership after a Holdsworth-led consortium, Sports Shield Group, completed a takeover on Friday. The club needed a third stay of execution from a High Court judge last week when faced with a winding-up petition from HM Revenue and Customs.

New chief executive Holdsworth, a former Wanderers player, offered no assurances over Lennon’s future last week and the Irishman departs on the back of a seven-game winless run which has left Bolton on the brink of relegation to Sky Bet League One.

They are also yet to win away in the Championship this season having lost 14 of their 18 games on the road.

The club had been operating under a cloud of uncertainty for more than four months before Holdsworth completed his takeover, with long-time owner Eddie Davies having withdrawn his financial backing to leave the club teetering on the brink of liquidation.

Lennon therefore had to make cutbacks to his squad and wage bill while being unable to bring in any players since a Football League embargo was imposed on the side at Christmas.

Striker Emile Heskey concedes those factors made the job challenging for Lennon.

“It’s been a difficult time for the whole club, him as well,” he said.

“We haven’t got the players that he probably would have liked to have brought in. We’re working on a shoestring really.”

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