Exclusive: McNamara claims Celtic have agreed terms with 'Very popular' figure at Parkhead

Jackie McNamara has been left lauding over the job done by Nick Hammond after he was permanently appointed as the head of football operations at Celtic.

The former Hoops and Scotland star, speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, says that the former West Brom chief appears to have established himself as a popular figure behind-the-scenes at Celtic Park.

Hammond initially arrived in Glasgow over the summer as a consultant to fill the void left by former head of recruitment Lee Congerton, helping Neil Lennon’s side recruit 14 new names in the off-season, including the likes of Fraser Forster.

Having seen Hammond play a crucial role in strengthening the Bhoys’ options before agreeing terms on a permanent stay, McNamara says that he looks to be a smart appointment who is trusted by the likes of Neil Lennon and Peter Lawwell.

Asked about the job Hammond did before his permanent appointment, McNamara told Football Insider: “He seems to be very popular, he looks like he’s done a good job with the players he brought in over the summer, they signed some good players.

“With one window closed they’ll be looking towards the next one to strengthen, to tie players down and to keep them, so it’s important that they plan ahead.

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“It’s inevitable that they (Lawwell, Lennon, Hammond) are going to work together to get players in and it’s important that they trust each other.”

Celtic’s new signings have helped the Hoops top the Premiership table after nine games, their superior goal difference all that separates them and fierce rivals Rangers at the summit.

The Bhoys’ next game sees them take on Italian side Lazio in the Europa League on Thursday, before returning to domestic action against Aberdeen on Sunday.

In other Celtic news, Paul Robinson has suggested that one Hoops star doesn’t like Neil Lennon after a big development at Parkhead.