If you look back to the end of 2018, it is highly unlikely that many Celtic fans’ predictions for 2019 would have involved Brendan Rodgers leaving in the middle of a title race and Neil Lennon returning to the club as manager.
However, that is what happened, in yet another drama-filled year for the Scottish champions.
How many fans would have foreseen a third consecutive domestic treble this time last year? Perhaps a few.
More than the number wouldn’t have expected to see Celtic win in Italy for the first time ever. But that is what happened at Celtic in the year 2019
Making predictions when it comes to football is never an easy thing to do. However, that won’t stop 67 Hail Hail from trying.
We are going to make three Celtic predictions for the year 2020. Should these events come to pass, then it should be a very enjoyable 12 months for the Hoops support.
Neil Lennon will sign a long-term contract with the club
Neil Lennon is currently on a one-year rolling contract as Celtic manager. However, we believe that could change at the end of the season. When nine in a row is clinched, we will be rewarded with a long-term contract similar to how Brendan Rodgers was given one towards the end of his first season in charge.
Lennon has so far proven to be a far better manager than during his first spell in charge of the Hoops. For evidence of that just look at the performances in the Europa League this season.
Celtic have progressed in the second-half of 2019, and that is down to Neil Lennon
The Hoops should have high hopes of making progress to the latter stages of the Europa League, and the main reason for that is how well Lennon has done. The club’s results since his return have only added to his legend at Celtic Park.
Celtic will break their transfer record
Celtic have not been afraid to spend big in recent years. The signing of Odsonne Edouard for £9 million in 18 remains the record signing by the club. This summer they made their second most expensive purchase, landing Christopher Jullien for £7 million.
We reckon that in 2020, the Hoops could go one step further and break the current transfer record.
It likely won’t be done in the January window though. It is too difficult to get a deal like that done in the middle of the season.
However, with 10 in a row on the line, Celtic will want to make a major signing as a statement of intent. That’s why in the summer of 2020, the Hoops might even spend as much as £10m on a player.
Hopefully, Peter Lawwell, Neil Lennon and Nick Hammond are currently working away on a deal that can be completed in the summer, that will take the Hoops to a new level in Scotland and improve the club’s performances in Europe.
Celtic will reach at least the quarter-finals of the Europa League
The draw for the last 32 of the Europa League has been relatively kind to Celtic. The Hoops will face Copenhagen, and on the face of it they look to have a great chance of reaching the last 16 of the competition. From there, anything can happen.
Can Celtic reach at least the quarter-final stage of the tournament?
There might be some big teams left in the tournament – Ajax and Inter Milan, for example – but Celtic shouldn’t fear playing any side in the competition. The Hoops proved their worth with the wins over Lazio in the group stage.
With that in mind, Celtic are more than capable of reaching the last eight of the Europa League.
Neil Lennon knows what it is like to play in a European final, will he also have the honour of managing in one? Only time will tell on that.