Report: Celtic made contact with Eddie Howe shortly after Lennon resignation, delay explained

By Euan Davidson

April 2, 2021

A report in The Scotsman has suggested that Celtic contact with Eddie Howe in February.

The article states that while Scott Brown was made an offer he couldn’t refuse, Howe was seeing how the land laid in England’s top flight.

After Neil Lennon’s resignation, Celtic were keen to land the ex-Bournemouth boss [Scotsman]. However, with uncertainty surrounding the dugouts of Newcastle United and Crystal Palace, the former EFL Manager of the Decade wanted to float his value.

According to the report [Scotsman]:

“Howe has been warming to the job offer from Celtic not merely because the club have long coveted him and are willing to meet his expectations over transfer budget, backroom structure and salary.

“A swaying factor is that there is only uncertainty surrounding his previous desire to reactivate his coaching career in the English Premier League, which ended when he resigned from Bournemouth on August 1 last year following their final-day demotion days earlier.

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“If Howe only had eyes for Celtic, he would already have been in position for more than a month. As soon as Neil Lennon made way in late February, contact was made with his representatives.

“It is understood he then fed back that the proposition was seriously interesting, but that his preference was to wait and see what the managerial shakedown was in the English top flight come the season’s end.

“[It’s] been reported Howe turned down two English Premier League clubs in recent weeks.”

Howe: in demand / (Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)

Eddie Howe has every right to test his value in domestic football

Of course, Eddie Howe doesn’t owe Celtic anything. In much the same way Brendan Rodgers would’ve tested the waters before joining Celtic, so too would Howe.

The report claims that Crystal Palace were a particularly interesting option. However, with the league table looking as it does [Premier League], it seems counter-productive for Howe. Involving himself in another precarious relegation dog-fight after a decade of scrappy survivalism isn’t the most temping offer.

Instead, should he join Celtic, he can win trophies. He can compete in European football from the off. Of course, we see most everything through Green-tinted glasses. Even then, though, surely 60,000 supporters every other week is a hard temptation to resist.

Joining a club the size and stature of Celtic helped out the likes of Brendan Rodgers and Martin O’Neill, long-term. If Howe has designs on the England job, it’s worth noting that O’Neill and Strachan went on to international management. Should he want to eventually try managing abroad, the Champions League or Europa League are a good advert for his talents.

There’s still so much opportunity for things to wrong from a Bhoys perspective.

But we’d rather be hopeful for a Howe era at Celtic Park.

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