'Baffling': Sutton would be shocked if Celtic appointed 49-year-old as manager

Nathaniel Kay March 30, 2021
'Baffling': Sutton would be shocked if Celtic appointed 49-year-old as manager
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Former Celtic striker Chris Sutton thinks it would be “baffling” if the club decided to appoint Roy Keane as their next manager, speaking on BBC Radio Five Live.

Celtic parted ways with Neil Lennon last month following a disastrous defence of their Scottish Premiership crown.

Assistant coach John Kennedy has overseen proceedings at Celtic Park until a permanent boss is put in place.

Plenty of names have been put forward for the vacancy. The Daily Mail recently reported former Borussia Dortmund coach Lucien Favre has thrown his hat into the ring.

World Cup winner Thierry Henry and former Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe have also been linked by various sources.

However, the strongest rumours seem to be swirling around a former player, Keane. The Irishman ended his playing career at Celtic in 2006.

Sutton shakes his head

Despite the constant murmurs, Sutton feels Celtic would be foolish to appoint the 49-year-old because of his lack of managerial experience.

The former Celtic striker said: “I don’t believe it can be Roy Keane. He isn’t in a manager’s job at this moment in time and I would find it baffling if Celtic employed a Keane or an Eddie Howe, someone out of work.

Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images

“Somebody should have been in long before now, when there’s a massive overhaul at the club.

“It would be the oddest decision. There have been some odd decisions at Celtic this season, but that would be a really strange decision.

“Unless there’s already been a deal done and Keane or Howe are part of the recruitment process?

“The worry with Roy Keane, whether we like it or not, he’s (only) had a couple of jobs in management.

“Did well at Sunderland, did okay at Ipswich, but that was a decade ago.”

However, Sutton back-tracked a bit when it came to Keane’s recent work with the Republic of Ireland.

Sutton said: “(Keane) has been an assistant to Martin O’Neill. I know Martin raves about him and thinks he could do a very good job (at Celtic).”

Can Keane do it?

It would be a bold move for Celtic to appoint the fiery Keane, whose last full-time appointment was at Ipswich in 2011.

Moving for former players can sometimes end in tears on both sides, too. Lennon being a case in point.

Whoever the club chooses, they will need to see instant results as the Hoops bid to reclaim the title from arch rivals Rangers.

For the neutral at least, thoughts of a touchline showdown between Steven Gerrard and Keane is certainly attention-grabbing.

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Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.