It's been a drawn-out process with a lot of fans being frustrated at the lack of communication on the matter from the club, but, finally, Celtic look to be on the verge of filling the managerial void left by Neil Lennon’s February exit.
Many big names have been linked with the position, from Frank Lampard and Roy Keane to Rafael Benitez, but it looks like Dermott Desmond and the panel have plumped for the early front-runner in Eddie Howe.
Desmond and the board clearly wanted to do their due diligence to make sure they get the man they trust to wrestle the title back from Rangers and progress the club forward over the next few years.
Now Howe looks set to be handed that responsibility and will be tasked with refreshing a deflated squad of players as well as a disgruntled set of supporters.
What can Howe expect in Glasgow?
The first thing expected of him will be to win matches, and plenty of them.
I hear a lot of managers talking about philosophies and long-term plans. That is all great in theory but the only way to get supporters to buy into your project is to deliver the results they demand. Celtic fans have been used to unrivalled success over the past few years so they are expectant and insistent on getting back to those days.
You generally don’t last long in the Glasgow goldfish bowl if you don’t deliver trophies. Patience isn’t a word that supporters of Celtic or Rangers like to associate themselves with because they want success and they want it now.
Rangers, it has to be said, bucked that trend with Steven Gerrard as he was given longer than most to prove his worth and his side recently clinched the Scottish Premiership title. It took him almost three seasons to do it and he was backed in the transfer market but if he hadn’t delivered this season his time would have been up.
I don’t imagine Howe will get three seasons to deliver his first major trophy at Celtic and that’s not something he will be used to. That means he may have to veer away slightly from how he wants to play the game initially to hit the ground running.
As a manager, once you start to win games and build momentum as well as gain the trust of the supporters then you can start to impose the necessary changes you want and mould your team as you realistically want.
Managing a smaller club like Bournemouth and fighting relegation doesn’t compare to managing Celtic with the requirement to win trophies. I’m certainly not devaluing the incredible work Howe did at his boyhood club because the one trait that his time at Bournemouth showed was that he could get his team to overachieve.
He has shown he can get the best out of the players at his disposal and some more, which is an important ingredient for a team to have. That usually comes from the manager’s approach to the players and clearly the players that have played under Howe have followed his instructions through and produced.
I would imagine the major difference with managing Bournemouth and managing Celtic is how you approach every game.
At Bournemouth it would likely have been acceptable at times to set up as a team to contain the opposition and draw a game with everyone being happy and it being classed as a professional performance.
At Celtic, it’s the polar opposite. The expectation among the Celtic fans is that no matter who they play or what competition they play in, they believe they can win and want their team set up in such a way. They want a team who are on the front foot and aggressive, who go after the game in an attempt to win, irrespective of the opposition.
Howe’s mindset and approach will have to change quickly if that’s the case or the fans will soon let him know.
Bournemouth is also a club who operate under the radar due to the size of other clubs in and around them. Howe seems quite a private guy who likes to keep himself to himself and get on with his life without any fuss.
Well, that is also about to change because Glasgow is such an intrusive city when it comes to football.
Every angle of the manager will be scrutinised and every decision he makes is dissected. Football is a way of life in Scotland’s second city so that’s something Howe will have to adapt to or it could swallow him up.
The biggest attraction for Howe to manage a great club like Celtic is the opportunity to win major silverware. It’s all well and good managing in the English Premier League and striving for a top-10 finish but Celtic offer something unique in that they challenge for titles and play against some of Europe’s finest teams.
Howe, like most managers, will want to look back on his career and judge it by the honours he won. Celtic offer him that prospect and it will excite him.
What also can’t be missed is that before Gareth Southgate was appointed as England manager, Howe was a realistic and very serious candidate.
He’s held in very high regard south of the border by many so Celtic could just have pulled off a major coup as the club begin a new era.