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Page last updated at 16:14 GMT, Sunday, 9 May 2010 17:14 UK

Interim manager Neil Lennon's future at Celtic unclear

Neil Lennon
Lennon was thanked by Celtic chairman John Reid for his contribution

Celtic say they will only now begin the formal process of considering a new manager after allowing Neil Lennon to complete the season as caretaker boss.

Club chairman John Reid released a statement thanking Lennon following Saturday's 2-1 win away to Hearts.

"We intentionally delayed starting that process until today out of fairness and courtesy to Neil," said Reid.

"This is a big and important decision, and will require a thorough consideration by Celtic."

Lennon said last week that he expected to learn his fate in the days following the final game of the season, which finished with Celtic in second place, six points adrift of city rivals Rangers.

"I am well aware that our fans would like us to complete the process as speedily as possible - commensurate with full consideration - and we will try to do that," said Reid.

I've done my pitch, in terms of what we've done over the past few months. I don't think you can do any better than eight out of eight

Celtic interim manager Neil Lennon

Lennon, who replaced the sacked Tony Mowbray in March, has led Celtic to eight league victories in a row, the only blip in his tenure being a surprise defeat by First Division minnows Ross County in the Scottish Cup semi-final.

And the former Celtic and Northern Ireland midfielder remains hopeful that his record will secure him the job long-term.

"I've done a wee bit, but it's about the players," said Lennon. "They've been tremendous.

"I've done my pitch over the past few months. I don't think you can do any better than eight out of eight."

Lennon praised his players for their spirit following the 2-1 win over Hearts and acknowledged that Celtic had to consider every option in their search for a new manager.

"The board are duty-bound to look at it and I would be a bit foolish to think otherwise," said Lennon, whose side also took confidence from Tuesday's 2-1 win over the reigning champions.

"I understand that it's a big decision for the club and it's a very important time for us all.

"Its a great way to finish the season. We've had a very good week and some very good performances.

"They've given themselves a lot to look forward to next season.

"The squad have shown it, not just the starting 11, that they can compete at this level and do well."

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see also
Hearts 1-2 Celtic
09 May 10 |  Scottish Premier
Lennon pleased with Celtic record
07 May 10 |  Celtic
Lennon decision 'within 10 days'
05 May 10 |  Celtic
Lennon wants big-money signings
01 May 10 |  Celtic

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