OWEN Coyle says Celtic are a “top club” but stopped short of formally declaring an interest in the vacant manager’s post at Parkhead.
The search for the new Parkhead boss is under way after Neil Lennon stepped down on Thursday having led the club to three Scottish Premiership titles during his four-year spell in charge.
Lennon’s former team-mate Henrik Larsson immediately became one of the front-runners for the post in a field of constantly-changing favourites which includes names such as Owen Coyle, David Moyes, Malky Mackay, Jackie McNamara, Roy Keane, Steve Clarke and Paul Lambert.
The Scot, who was sacked by Wigan in December, said he admired Celtic as a club and said it would be a “marvellous job”.
He told the BBC:“Glasgow Celtic are a global club, there’s no doubt about that - and of course it’s a marvellous job,”
“Like anything else, the bookies’ (odds) change very quickly. I don’t think I was the favourite yesterday.
“I think people put two and two together.
“The bottom line is that it is well-documented that Celtic are my team and that will never ever change.”
“Regardless of people’s perceptions, Glasgow Celtic is a huge job, it’s an elite club,” he said.
“If you go anywhere in the world, Glasgow Celtic are known, their jerseys are there.
“Peter Lawwell, Dermot Desmond, the owner, the model they have put into the club has brought them success and Neil Lennon’s been a huge part of that as well.”
Celtic in no rush
Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell insists he is in no rush to appoint a successor to Neil Lennon.
Lawwell, though, insists Celtic have not yet approached anyone and will exercise due diligence in the selection process.
He told Sky Sports: “It is very early to make any comment, I am sure you will understand. It is very early in the process.
“We will take as much time as it needs to get the right candidate and we have got a wee bit of time so hopefully we will get it right.”
While many people thought Lennon was set to walk straight into a job in England upon his departure, the former Celtic skipper claimed that there is nothing immediate in the pipeline although he admits working down south is an ambition
“It’s a decision I have come to and it might not be in the short term, it might be a long-term thing ,” he said.
“It’s an ambition (to work in England) but I need some time to digest it all. Leaving Celtic is a huge wrench.
“I will probably never leave it in my mind but physically I will do.
“I have been associated with the club for 13 years and I am sure I will still have an association with it.
“I just need time to think things over. I won’t rush anything. I don’t know if opportunities will come up.
“People say it is a bit of a gamble but I just felt that the time was right for me and my staff to take out careers in a different direction.
“I left the club in a great position, from when I took over.
“On and off the field we are very strong and our reputation in Europe is very good.”