Neil Lennon says he has 'big shoes' to fill in replacing Brendan Rodgers as Celtic boss

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New Celtic manager Neil Lennon says he is replacing one of the club's greatest ever managers in Brendan Rodgers

Neil Lennon says he always dreamed of coming back to Celtic but admits he has "big shoes" to fill in replacing Brendan Rodgers.

Lennon, who won three league titles and two Scottish Cups in just over four years in a previous stint as Celtic boss, is back in charge for the rest of the season following Rodgers' sudden departure to Leicester.

Lennon now has the chance to guide Celtic to a domestic 'Treble-Treble' with the club eight points clear of Rangers, the Scottish League Cup already secured, and with a Scottish Cup quarter-final against Hibernian, whom Lennon left in January, to come at Easter Road on Saturday.

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Celtic first-team coach John Kennedy says Brendan Rodgers won't complete the treble treble but the players can.

Lennon, who had to cancel a holiday in order to take charge at Celtic, told the media on Wednesday morning: "My Speedos were packed, the Factor 50 all done and now I am stuck here with you guys! I am sure you are all delighted about that.

"It was a no-brainer, I'm very grateful to be here. The board have put their faith in me to see out the season.

"The most important thing is the club. They've lost a manager who will go down as one of the greats. I've got big shoes to fill.

"The team's been unbelievable under Brendan. When I took over the last time the club was in a very different position.

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"Tactically, you learn as you go along. I don't have all the answers, and I don't want to be compared to Brendan.

"I know some people will do that, as we go along. Brendan has his way and it has been fantastic, I have my way.

"Brendan has certainly raised the bar in terms of trophies. Everyone is talking about 10 (titles in a row), I would just like to get to eight first and then take it from there.

"That is the most important thing to me and I am not looking too far ahead.

"I like to play attacking football, as did Brendan. It is the DNA of the club."

Hibernian manager Neil Lennon and Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers in 2018
Image: Neil Lennon took over from Brendan Rodgers as Celtic boss on Tuesday

Lennon says he has mellowed since his first spell in charge at Parkhead.

"I am not as volatile, I don't think. I wanted to take on the world when I first took over," he said.

"I think you learn from that, you mellow from that. But I have still got that energy, that will to win, which I want to always bring with me.

Asked if he wanted the role beyond the end of the season, Lennon added: "It's not up to me. I'm not even thinking about that, the club comes first. It's about the club and the players.


"This is a club decision and come the summer it will be another club decision, what the board think is best for the club going forward.

"These opportunities come round once in a lifetime, and it's come round twice in a lifetime for me."

Lennon's first two games in charge of the Scottish champions will be against Hearts live on Sky Sports on Wednesday night, and against former club Hibernian in the Scottish Cup on March 2.

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