Neil Lennon reportedly still eyeing up John Park for Celtic role

By David Walton

June 3, 2019

Neil Lennon is reportedly still looking to sway John Park to Celtic to be his new Head of Recruitment.

According to the Scottish Sun, Lennon hasn’t given up hope of landing Park. That’s despite the fact Sunderland had reportedly won the race to sign him up last month (Daily Mail).

The deal has yet to be confirmed, and the Sun believes that Lennon is still hopeful of landing his former colleague.

Neil Lennon’s first spell in charge of Celtic saw him work with John Park (David Ramos/Getty Images)

There hasn’t been much said about Celtic’s plans for their new Head of Recruitment. Since the reports of Park potentially moving to Sunderland, it had all gone quiet.

Reasons for Park’s delay in moving to Sunderland also haven’t been released. The Black Cats, of course, failed to earn promotion to the Championship last week, and that could easily have a bearing on his decision. This, of course, hasn’t been confirmed.

Park hasn’t previously worked with Sunderland manager Jack Ross either. If any deal went ahead at the Stadium of Light, this would be a first for the potential partnership.

Could Lennon relationship prove key?

That’s where Lennon differs from Ross. Lennon worked with Park during his first stint at the club between 2010 and 2014. Park helped secure signings such as Virgil Van Dijk and Victor Wanyama to Parkhead.

Virgil Van Dijk has John Park and Lennon to thank for being identified in Britain (David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images)

Of course the duo were also together when players such as Miku, Pawel Brozek, and Steven Mouyokolo were signed too. Which transfer targets by identified by either Park or Lennon, however, isn’t exactly clear. But overall, they were a successful partnership, and it’s no surprise to see Lennon reportedly keen on bringing him back up to Paradise.

Park would also have some stability at Celtic. Sunderland haven’t made their plans clear for next season, and Ross could come under pressure after failing to get them out of League One this term.

Victor Wanyama is another of Park and Lennon’s headline signings (VI Images via Getty Images)

Meanwhile, at Celtic Park, Lennon has just been appointed as the permanent manager. Both he and Park would most certainly get both the summer and January windows to put their respective marks on things, barring a disaster.

At the end of the day, if Park is who Lennon wants, then the board should be going all out to get him. Nothing is ever simple in football, however, and the wait continues to go on.