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SCOTS BOSS ADMITS CELTIC TALKS

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STEVE CLARKE has revealed he had talks with club supremo Dermot Desmond for the vacant Celtic manager’s post – in 2014.

The Scotland boss, who is preparing his players for the Euro Finals next month, was up for grabs after leaving his job at West Brom in May 2014 after two years at the Hawthorns.

Neil Lennon had decided it was time to move elsewhere after winning two back-to-back titles and Republic of Ireland and Manchester United legend Roy Keane looked in pole position for the role.

There had been talk virtually unknown Norwegian Ronny Deila could also come in as his deputy.

While the guessing game went into overdrive, Clarke came on the scene and was under the radar when he had discussions with the Hoops’ majority shareholder.

The 57-year-old former international defender, who had been a target for Davie Hay during his days in charge at Parkhead, reflected on events seven years ago and admitted: “At the start of that summer, I was quite confident I’d come out the other side in a job of some kind.

“I met Dermot Desmond at his place in London and we had a good chat. I was interviewed by Brighton at around the same time.

“I had two really good interviews at two really good clubs and ended up runner-up in both.

“Celtic appointed Ronny Deila while Sami Hyypia got the Brighton job. So, it was a little lesson for me not to be too confident about getting a job in future.”

Clarke, speaking to the Scottish Sun, added: “It’s nice to be wanted, it’s nice to be invited for interviews, but it’s not always certain a job is going to result.

“A few months later I went to Reading. The job didn’t turn out the way I thought it would, but I made the most of it then moved on.”

Clarke moved to Kilmarnock in 2017 for two successful years before stepping up to the Scotland manager’s role.

He has led the Scots to their first major tournament since Craig Brown was in the hot seat for the World Cup Finals in France in 1998.

First up are the Czech Republic at Hampden on June 14, followed by England at Wembley four days later and then Croatia back in Glasgow on the twenty-second.

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