Celtic title-winner Scott McDonald has claimed that the Hoops have “a plan in place” when it comes to John Kennedy’s long-term future.
Kennedy played for the club after coming through the youth ranks before being forced to retire in 2009 when he picked up a career-ending injury. Since then, he’s worked for the club as a scout, youth team coach, first-team coach, and now sits alongside Neil Lennon as the club’s assistant manager.
During that period, the former Celtic centre-back has worked alongside the likes of Ronny Deila and Brendan Rodgers in what’s been a wealth of experience under his belt.
And 2007/08 title-winner McDonald believes that, should Lennon be given the sack in the coming weeks, fans shouldn’t expect Kennedy to follow him. Speaking to the Huddle Podcast, Skippy said: “No, he doesn’t go (along with Lennon).
“There’s obviously a plan in place for John. He’s worked under several managers and is more or less part of the furniture now and the club believes in John. That’s evident and that’s why he’s been put in the role that he’s in now.
“If you’re asking me if he’s going to be the next Celtic manager, I don’t believe so at this moment in time. I do believe though, if everything had gone well this year, I still probably saw Neil leaving after Ten. I didn’t think that he could continue thereafter.”
Kennedy has plenty more experience to gain before he becomes Celtic manager
Yes, Kennedy has been around in Glasgow for a long time now. He’s provided some great service to the club over the years, even if the club has most certainly been just as good for him too.
However, there remains question marks about the effect of his all-round influence on the club. Fans in the past have been concerned with the club’s consistent defensive frailties over the years despite Kennedy himself being a centre-back.
In addition to that, Kennedy has been a part of just as many struggling regimes as he has those who have thrived. He was a key part of Deila’s Celtic backroom team as a first-team coach when we went on a steep decline during the 2015/16 season. The same can be said this season as an assistant manager.
But even if every regime Kennedy worked in was successful, he still needs some management experience. It’s a totally different role being an assistant manager than it is actually being your own man as a number one. That comes with much more pressure and scrutiny placed on you.
The current Hoops number two was linked with a move to Hibernian before Jack Ross got the role (Sky Sports). That’s the kind of move he needs to make in order to prove to Celtic fans that he has something about him and has the ability to lead and drive clubs forward with him in the driving seat.
We’ve yet to see that from Kennedy, and even if the board entrusts him with the job one day despite having no previous managerial experience, he’ll do well to win over what will be a massively skeptical supporter base.