Alex McLeish has suggested John Kennedy could still be named permanent Celtic manager if he gets the backing of the dressing room. 

The former Scotland boss, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, suggested the players could sway the thinking of the board amid the Hoops’ managerial hunt.

As revealed by Football Insider on Monday, Roy Keane is back in the frame for the Celtic job after appearing to slip out of contention.

The Hoops were in talks with the former Bhoy last month but decided to pursue a deal for Eddie Howe instead.

However, the ex-Bournemouth boss has gone cold on the Parkhead job, despite verbally agreeing to take charge.

All the while, Kennedy, 37, has been managing the Bhoys on an interim basis for the last two months.

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He suffered his first defeat in six games on Sunday with a 2-0 Scottish Cup loss to Rangers.

McLeish admitted the Celtic board would likely want a more experienced candidate to take charge for next season.

However, he suggested that could change if a dressing room consultation shows unwavering support for the temporary boss.

“I always believed that the go-to guys for these kinds of decisions is the players,” McLeish told Football Insider’s Russell Edge.

“John has got a good reputation. A friend of mine up in Glasgow is very pally with him and he thinks that John could definitely step up. John’s got to be believing that as well.

“If the players were really vociferous in terms of saying: ‘John’s been superb…’ They have been very, very supportive of the interim manager.

Celtic

“I think that Celtic will be looking for more experience in a coach than John has at this moment. Although, he has been in and around the first team for donkey’s years.

“I believe that the Celtic fans will be looking for the announcement of a big name.”

In other news, a top Scots pundit has named one Hoops player in his combined Celtic/Rangers XI.