I know what you’re thinking. After the media heavyweights told you, on the day Neil Lennon resigned from Celtic, that he was going because he was unhappy with the amount of money he had to spend, pitching up at Bolton Wanderers is a bit curious. What you were told that day was nonsense, deliberately headlined to undermine Celtic.
Neil had been in the shop window since the Everton job came up in May 2013 and had long decided he wanted a crack at managing in England before the end of last season.
On paper, the Bolton job looks daunting. The club are bottom of the second tier of English football, while those immediately above them, Blackpool, Fulham, Wigan and Birmingham, like Bolton have recently had Premier League experience. It’s early enough in the season that survival is a reasonable expectation, but Neil will know little about the squad he takes over, or about their ability to step up.
Taking this job is a huge risk to an accomplished CV but so is spending an extended period on the side-lines as an out-of-work manager. Whatever the reasons he didn’t land a better job over the summer, Neil is a better manager than the English clubs appear to believe. He’ll get Bolton organised and picking up points against teams with better players, just as he did regularly in Europe with Celtic.
In other news many of the same media heavyweights referred to above today report Arsenal are preparing a bid for a Celtic player, in January. After selling us the same story that the same player would be subject to the same bid back in August.
It’s as though they have space to fill on the sports pages and there’re not been a lot of football recently.[calameo code=0003901718cdc4362fa2e? lang=en page=122 hidelinks=1 width=100% height=500]