Celtic must keep John Kennedy at the club after sending early message
When Neil Lennon was introduced to the media, and the Celtic support, after his interim appointment in February, he wasn’t alone. By his side, as he answered questions and posed for photographs under the Celtic scarf, was assistant manager John Kennedy. The message couldn’t have been clearer.
The former defender, who had been part of both Ronny Deila and Brendan Rodgers’ regimes, once again had a big part to play with Lennon. It was a firm message that the club sent from the very outset – and one they can’t afford to scrap now.
It’s probably no surprise to hear that Hibernian are keen to take the former Scotland international to Easter Road. An official approach is imminent, if a report from Sky Sports News is to be believed. Celtic look like they’re going to have their resolve tested. So does Kennedy.
Kennedy is a big part of what’s going on at Celtic
Kennedy’s role has grown at Celtic since Lennon took over from Rodgers earlier this year. His experience of the previous regime undoubtedly helped to smooth over a transition period after Rodgers had taken virtually ever other staff member with him to Leicester.
In Lennon’s second game, a 2-0 cup success at Hibernian, he praised Kennedy for a “few tweaks” that brought about the win.
🗣️ NL: "I’ve moved Jamesy into a more central position about 10 minutes before half-time, because we weren’t affecting between the lines enough. John made a few tweaks tactically as well, just to give us better control of the game. The second-half was magnificent."
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) March 2, 2019
The comments were a little strange at the time but they showed exactly the input Kennedy has on this current setup.
He’s also been a growing presence on the touchline over the past couple of months. Kennedy has been seen shouting tactical instructions from the side more prominently. For example, it was he and not Lennon, who was prominent on the sideline at Celtic broke for Olivier Ntcham’s winner at the Stadio Olimpico.
Make no mistake about it, Kennedy is a big part of the current success at the club. He has been for the past five or six years. Keeping him on is extremely important.