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Eddie Howe has issued three demands during negotiations for the Celtic job, reports say. The 43-year-old has been out of work since leaving Bournemouth last year. However, he’s now primed to return to management and replace Neil Lennon over in the Scottish capital.
Celtic have been looking for a permanent replacement for Lennon ever since he quit the club back in February.
John Kennedy has overseen the Hoops’ matches in the short time since, but has never been under consideration to take the job permanently.
Celtic know they need a top manager if they’re to stop Rangers next time out, with their fierce rivals recently ending their decade of dominance in the Scottish Premiership.
And, now, The Sun claim they’re closing in on Howe.
It’s said the former Bournemouth boss has reached an ‘agreement in principle’ about taking over at Celtic Park, with the Hoops confident they’ll be able to announce him soon.
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And it’s also said Celtic were given three demands by Howe in talks.
The 43-year-old has insisted on full control over the squad and a sizeable war-chest in order to turn the club around.
And Howe also wants close friend and current Bournemouth technical director Richard Hughes to join him, with the pair both doing well during their time at the Vitality Stadium together.
Celtic are now said to be ready to make a formal approach for Hughes.
And it seems only a matter of time before Howe is officially announced, with the Hoops convinced he can bring the glory days back.
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It’s going to be a big job for the ex-Cherries boss with Scott Brown leaving for Aberdeen and players such as Odsonne Edouard, Kris Ajer and Ryan Christie facing uncertain futures.
It’s unclear what the fate of Kennedy will be, while Stephen McManus is likely to return to development coaching.
Howe is reportedly excited by the challenge the Celtic job will pose, having previously been linked with Newcastle and Crystal Palace.
Yet whether he can stop Rangers from dominating the top flight under Steven Gerrard is something only time will tell.
Meanwhile, speaking earlier in the month, Noel Whelan endorsed Howe’s appointment – insisting he was the right man for the job.
“Yeah, absolutely. Thank god. Thank god someone has actually seen sense,” he said.
“I think a change of direction, a change of style. Fresh ideas is what I’ve been saying at Celtic. I think the players will become better players with Eddie Howe there.
“I’m surprised that no one’s taken a little chip at him yet outside of Scotland. I’m very happy if that’s the direction they’re looking.
“I think that’s the right direction with Celtic. I think he’s a fantastic manager, great ideas. He’s fresh, he’s very intelligent and he’s got that know-how with younger players as well.
“He’s not that old himself. He knows how to man-manage players, he knows how to get the best out of players. I think that would be a great move for Celtic if they can get it signed, sealed and delivered.”
Lennon announced his resignation from Celtic by saying: “We have experienced a difficult season due to so many factors and it is very frustrating and disappointing that we have not been able to hit the same heights as we did previously.
“I have worked as hard as ever to try and turn things around, but unfortunately we have not managed to get the kind of run going that we have needed.
“I have always given my best to the club and have been proud to deliver silverware to the Celtic supporters.
“The club will always be part of me. I will always be a Celtic supporter myself and I will always want the best for Celtic.”
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