Neil Lennon has landed in the Reebok and for some Celtic fans that just doesn’t make sense. Why would you go to Bolton after managing Celtic many are asking.
Out of necessity, is the answer.
Neil knew his time was up at Celtic as he waved a Champions flag over his head while celebrating a 3rd successive title at the end of last season. Celtic hierarchy had taken things for granted and backed him into a corner, little to no investment was forthcoming post season and it was time to cut his ties with the club, professionally anyway.
I can’t fault Neil Lennon for that, as many others have pointed out the writing was indeed on the wall and if you weren’t convinced that was the case look out hard his successor is finding things.
The former Celtic boss took some much needed time off after 4 plus years of stress on and off the pitch.
Although he told the press he wasn’t seeking an immediate return to management it would have been in the back of his mind that if an offer comes in for him then he would have to seriously consider it.
What he found since leaving Celtic is that there was not many clubs willing to take a gamble on him. Yes, he’s had success at Celtic but down south that counts for very little. I think some club owners would value a good run with a lower league side on Football Manager than anything accomplished in Scotland.
It was clear he wasn’t going to walk into any Premiership club off the back of his exploits with Celtic, he needs to prove his worth down south by managing in England and that’s why he finds himself at Bolton.
Neil has to prove himself all over again as a manager and Bolton have given him the opportunity to do so. Sitting dead last in the league Bolton’s owner, Eddie Davies, and chairman, Phil Gartside think Neil Lennon is the man to keep them afloat in the Championship. With only one win in eleven so far, it’s not going to be easy.
The Irishman will be relishing the chance. This will be nothing like his time in Scotland, he now finds himself in a very competitive league where his new team have been the whipping boys so far. At Celtic you are only one loss away from a crisis, at teams like Bolton 1 loss and there’s always next week.
Lenny doesn’t like to lose, that’s for sure. A lot of Celtic fans will be watching on with interest over the coming weeks and months as the former Celtic boss tries to mould Bolton in his own image.
We wish him all the best.