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In Pictures: Neil Lennon appointed Celtic manager

By Steven Beacom

Neil Lennon today gave Celtic fans the news they wanted to hear by saying he plans to bring the glory days back to Parkhead.

The former Northern Ireland international was officially unveiled as Celtic’s latest manager this morning.

Lennon stated it was a dream job for him having grown up in Lurgan as a Celtic fan before becoming a player, captain and coach for the club.

Now he has completed the set by becoming boss, replacing Tony Mowbray who was sacked after poor results left the Hoops trailing champions Rangers in the battle for SPL honours.

Lennon (pictured) was in Belfast yesterday attending a coaching course as he works towards his UEFA Pro-Licence, but he had to cut his studies short to return to Glasgow in order to finalise the one-year deal.

Lennon, who won 40 caps for his country, said today: “Celtic is my home. I’ve spent the last 10 years of my working life here and I look forward to bringing back the success our great club deserves. I want to bring the thunder and passion back to the club. I want the noise at Parkhead and want the fans to have a spring in their step.

“This is the most special moment of my career. It’s a dream for me and I’m ready for this challenge.

“It is a great honour to follow managers like Mr (Jock) Stein, Martin O’Neill, Billy McNeill, Davie Hay, Gordon Strachan and others.

“Whether as player, captain or manager, I’m a Celtic supporter first and foremost and no-one will work harder to put a winning team on the park.

“Over the past few weeks, I’ve had detailed discussions with senior figures at the club, including the Chairman John Reid, chief executive Peter Lawwell and Dermot Desmond (owner), all of whom have been extremely supportive and I’m convinced that, working together, we have the foundations in place to put silverware back in the trophy cabinet at Celtic Park.”

Former Celtic players Johan Mjallby and Alan Thompson will be on Lennon’s staff, along with his former Leicester City team-mate Garry Parker. Finland coach Stuart Baxter may be brought in on an advisory capacity.

On that subject, Lennon added: “I will have the final say on all football decisions.”

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