EDDIE HOWE has been forced to play the waiting game before his appointment as Celtic manager is rubber-stamped.

The former Bournemouth boss has been out of work since August last year, but it has emerged there are contractual obligations with the south coast club to be observed before he can finally cut his ties and move on.

Neil Lennon departed Parkhead in February and there has been a clamour for a new man to be announced while John Kennedy took over the role in an interim basis until the end of the season, as CQN forecast early last month.

Howe is still on course for Glasgow, despite being linked with the Crystal Palace post yesterday with the news 74-year-old Roy Hodgson would be stepping down after the club’s final game of the season on Sunday. Rafa Benitez and Frank Lampard appear to be the frontrunners for the London job.

The Hoops’ announcement has been delayed because of Bournemouth’s extended campaign as they attempt to fight back to the top flight via the play-offs where they hold a 1-0 semi-final first leg advantage over Brentford with the return due on Saturday afternoon.

Howe is in line to land a massive pay-off bonus from the Vitality Stadium outfit while he remains connected via a contractual agreement which was set out when he agreed to leave last summer, according to a report in the Daily Record.

If his former club are successful at Dean Court, they will face either Swansea or Barnsley in the Play-Off Final at Wembley the following weekend.

Celtic will have to bide their time as they await the green light to go public with the arrival of the 43-year-old highly-rated coach.

The Hoops fans, though, can be assured work is being done in the background to make certain the new man can hit the ground running with Champions League qualifiers due in July.

Howe is poised to raid his old club for backroom staff and is set to bring in technical director Richard Hughes along with coaches Stephen Purches and Simon Weatherstone.

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