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vacancy Favourite emerges in Celtic manager race and Martin O'Neill's odds are slashed

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Eddie Howe worked wonders at Bournemouth (Clive Brunskill/PA)

Eddie Howe worked wonders at Bournemouth (Clive Brunskill/PA)

Eddie Howe worked wonders at Bournemouth (Clive Brunskill/PA)

Celtic's hunt for a new manager has only just begun, with a name that has been linked with the club throughout the last few months emerging as the bookies favourite.

Former Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe is now a leading contender to take over from Neil Lennon, who finally ended his tortured season at Celtic when he resigned earlier this week.

Howe was strongly linked with a move to Celtic in the final months of 2020, but Lennon clung on to his job for an extended period despite a disastrous run of results that has handed the Scottish Premiership title to Rangers.

While Howe saw his reputation take a hit after he was relegated from the Premier League with Bournemouth last season, he is one of the most respected coaching talents in the British game and could be an option for Celtic now.

The odds on former Chelsea manager Frank Lampard returning to management with Celtic have also been trimmed in recent days, while former Celtic boss Martin O'Neill is also believed to have admirers in the Parkhead boardroom.

A report in the UK media has claimed that O'Neill turned down an approach to take over from Lennon earlier this season and it remains to be seen whether the former Republic of Ireland and Celtic boss wants to take on another big challenge at the age of 68.

John Kennedy, who is taking charge of the team this weekend following Lennon's exit could also be a contender, with Scotland boss Steve Clarke continuing to be linked with the Celtic post.

Yet Howe appears to be the front-runner in the race to take on what would be a big rebuilding job with the outgoing Scottish champions, with Roy Keane very much at outsider at 16/1 in the betting.

Next Celtic manager odds (Paddy Power):

Eddie Howe (5/2)

John Kennedy (13/5)

Frank Lampard (5/1)

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Martin O'Neill (5/1)

Steve Clarke (5/1)

Roberto Martinez (5/1)

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