Updates from Monday, June 2
Roy Keane will not become the next manager of Celtic, confirmed by the FAI on Monday.
Ian Mallon of Independent.ie had earlier reported:
Roy Keane will not be going to Glasgow Celtic, Independent.ie can exclusively reveal.
It is understood Celtic had made Keane a formal offer but in the end, the 42-year-old decided to see out his commitment with the national team. Keane made his decision known to Ireland manager Martin O’Neill and FAI Chief Executive John Delaney earlier today, it is believed.
Sky Sports' Pete O'Rourke reports Steve Clarke is now the favourite for the post:
Steve Clarke new favourite for Celtic after Roy Keane pulls out of the running for the job. #celtic— Pete O'Rourke (@SkySportsPeteO) June 2, 2014
Roy Keane leads the running for the vacant Celtic manager's job, according to reports.
The former Manchester United legend—who spent six months in the Scottish club's midfield at the end of his playing career—is among the candidates being considered to replace Neil Lennon. MailOnline Sport confirmed "informal" talks for the current Republic of Ireland assistant manager:
Martin O'Neill confirms Roy Keane has had informal chat with Celtic owner http://t.co/udweCYMWPD— MailOnline Sport (@MailSport) May 29, 2014
Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell acknowledged Keane is among a shortlist of "between five and 10 at the moment," as reported by Sky Sports. Lawwell suggested the board will take their time before selecting a new candidate to take the club forward:
Clearly we want to do it as soon as we possibly can, but with these things you can't put a timescale on it. You just have to do your work properly and hopefully we'll get there as soon as we can, but as soon as we do that we'll let our supporters know.
Lawwell also indicated he is looking to reveal the new boss "as soon as possible," but he is wary of progressing "too fast" through the selection process.
Martin O'Neill, the manager Keane answers to in his Ireland role, confirmed Celtic majority shareholder Dermot Desmond has made contact. O'Neill, who won seven trophies during a five-year spell in charge of the Bhoys, indicated Keane may find it difficult to turn an offer down. Sky Sports reported the details:
Roy has a lot to consider. I had a call the other day from Dermot Desmond wanting to speak to Roy if it was at all possible, and I mentioned it to Roy, of course.
I am sure he was wanting to have a chat anyway, because a club like Celtic might not come around too often.
Kevin Palmer of the Sunday World confirmed Keane isn't ducking away from his international duties at this potentially busy time:
Away from Keane, a number of other candidates are being reported throughout the press. Sami Mokbel of the Daily Mail believes Uwe Rosler is in the running after his impressive impact at Wigan, while he also suggests Malky Mackay and Owen Coyle are being considered.
Richard Wilson of BBC Sport believes "Celtic could benefit from an influence that reaches beyond the confines of British football." He notes how previous decisions have seen managers such as Guus Hiddink and Roberto Martinez missed out on, suggesting Celtic may expand as a brand if a professional with new ideas is hired.
Wilson also suggested Henrik Larsson, a striking legend and fan favourite at the club, may be in the running.
The likes of Keane, Mackay and Coyle fall in line with previous bosses who take a hard-line approach to leading. Celtic are more than likely to win trophies no matter who grabs the job—such is the state of Scottish football after Rangers' forced relegation—meaning it may be the right time to progress under continental influence.
With Rangers rising through Scotland's league structure, there may never be a better opportunity for Celtic to break away from the norm.