By Editor Wayne Veysey | 17 years experience of breaking major stories at Evening Standard, PA and Goal,including exclusives like this
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Brendan Rodgers is in advanced talks to become the new Celtic manager and the deal is set to be finalised in the next 48 hours, Football Insider sources understand.
The Scottish giants are increasingly hopeful of unveiling Rodgers as their new boss on Monday or Tuesday of next week.
Rodgers will be tasked with seeing off a renewed challenge from Rangers and negotiating a safe passage through the Champions League qualifiers.
A source close to the situation told Football Insider that Celtic settled on Rodgers to replace Ronny Deila following two rounds of talks with the former Liverpool manager.
Major shareholder Dermot Desmond also held lengthy discussions with David Moyes, Malky Mackay, Roy Keane and Neil Lennon but the Irish billionaire has asked Rodgers to take on the job.
The Scottish club’s biggest individual shareholder described Rodgers as a “great manager” earlier this week just 24 hours after it emerged he was in contention to become the new boss.
“We’re excited about the managers we’ve interviewed and we’ve discussed and hopefully in the next few days we will decide, usually with a manager, and enter negotiations,” said Desmond on Tuesday, as quoted by the BBC website.
“There’s lots of people, I wouldn’t speculate on who is the person at this point in time.”
Asked if Rodgers was one of those interviewed, Desmond replied: “I can’t tell a lie.
“He’s a great manager, he’s proved it at Liverpool and I think he’s a worthy candidate for Celtic – as all the other candidates are.”
Chief executive Peter Lawwell said last week the process of finding Deila’s replacement had started in earnest and there is a growing likelihood the board will reach a decision before the end of this month.
Deila, who bowed out with a resounding 7-0 win over Motherwell on Sunday, announced last month he was standing down after two seasons despite leading the Hoops to their fifth successive title.
Lawwell has made it clear in a series of interviews that Celtic will hand no more than a £10million warchest to their new manager in the summer transfer window.
There have been calls for the newly-crowned Scottish champions to spend £20million on new players in a bid to reach the Champions League group stages.
But Parkhead chief executive Lawwell insisted the club will not spend beyond their means and take on debt.