Belfast Telegraph

Neil Lennon: I want to lead Republic of Ireland

By Ruaidhri O'Connor

Celtic manager Neil Lennon has revealed his desire to one day manage the Republic of Ireland football team.

The Lurgan man won 40 caps for Northern Ireland during his playing career, retiring from international football in 2002 after receiving loyalist death threats.

Ex-midfield star Lennon — who turns 40 today — took over at Parkhead in March 2010 and recently agreed improved terms on his rolling 12-month deal after guiding the Hoops to the Scottish Cup.

Current Republic boss Giovanni Trapattoni's lucrative current contract expires after next year's European Championships and the FAI have yet to offer an extension, despite the Italian outlining his desire to remain at the helm.

Lennon believes the international game suits a more experienced boss, but he would be open to contact from the association. “The Republic job? Oh yeah,” he said.

“At the minute I'm just finding my feet, but if I was lucky enough even to get interviewed for the Ireland job I'd be very privileged and it would be something that would appeal to me.

“I think it's for the older manager with the experience and it suits Trapattoni who is doing a really good job at the minute. I watch Ireland quite a lot. I thought they were very impressive against Macedonia.

“The result against the Italians was fantastic, and Trapattoni has built a very good squad and a very hungry squad there by the looks of things.”

Belfast Telegraph


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