believes Celtic will have a safety net following the shock news Eddie Howe will not be taking over at the Hoops.

It was widely anticipated the 43-year-old former Bournemouth boss would be the long-term replacement for Neil Lennon until a bombshell statement that revealed the club would be looking elsewhere, as CQN reportedlast night.

The fallen champions have now confirmed they are aiming to appoint a new manager “very shortly”.

Lambert reckons his old club will have been readily prepared for this outcome and will have “a number of options” to consider.

The former skipper insisted: “Like any football club, Celtic will have a back-up plan for what it’s going to do.

“It’s too big a club to think it’s going to rest on one guy coming in.

“I think they’ll have a number of options to go and get, whether Eddie was the first guy or not, nobody knows, but he’s decided not to come.

“If that’s the case, then you move on because the club is bigger than anybody.

“Having played there, it’s a great club so whoever gets the job is walking into a great club.”

ON THE BALL…Paul Lambert in his Celtic playing days.

Ex-Scotland international midfielder Lambert, speaking to Sky Sports News, added: “The pressure at Celtic is huge, I think everybody who has been a player or a manager there will tell you the exact same.

“It’s really intense and if you get it right it’s absolutely fabulous, but whoever gets the job is going to walk into a fantastic place, will have 60,000 behind their back every time and it’s interesting to see who’ll get it.

“I think when you go into a club like Celtic I think you have to know that you can’t draw. You have to win every game really – and that includes Europe.

“The expectancy level of the club is so high, whether you’re going for the titles or the cups or Champions League qualification, you have to try and get it.

“I’m hoping whoever it is comes and embraces that and realises what size of club you’re walking into because it is a huge, huge football club.

“But, as I said, the Celtic board and the people at the top at Celtic will have somebody else in mind, I don’t think there should be any alarm bells.

“They’ll get somebody in, they’ll have a few options there, a few irons in the fire, I’m sure.”

One name that has emerged is that of former Australian international chief Ange Postecoglou, as CQN reported earlier today.

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