Steve Clarke is one of the best coaches in the world and would be a smart choice to succeed Neil Lennon at Celtic, according to Frank McAvennie.

The Parkhead legend, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, backed his former St Mirren teammate, Clarke, to “sort out” the club’s leaky defence if appointed.

The search has begun for Celtic’s new manager after Neil Lennon resigned following Sunday’s 1-0 defeat to Ross County.

Celtic

Football Insider understands Mick McCarthy is on the club’s shortlist to takeover after making an impressive impact at Cardiff City this year.

John Kennedy, who is currently caretaker manager, is the bookies early favourite to take the job permanently.

McAvennie would like to see his friend and current Scotland manager Steve Clarke considered for the role.

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“I played with Stevie Clarke at St Mirren – he’s a very good manager,” he told Football Insider.

“He is one of the best coaches in the world, I keep telling people. He has coached under Mourinho, Dalglish – some of the best.

“He would bring in his own players and they would need to let him buy players. I think he’d take it, too.

“One thing Stevie would do is sort the defence out. I think those at the club right now will be gone though because I don’t think any of them can defend – none of them. A lot of things have gone wrong but one thing Stevie Clarke would sort out would be that defence.” 

In other news, a top pundit claims Diego Laxalt can land a permanent move to Celtic after a ‘strange’ reveal from Lennon.