Published Thursday, 22 May 2014
UTV NEWS POLL
Who should be the next Celtic boss?
The 42-year-old has guided the Hoops to three successive Scottish Premier League titles and two Scottish Cup crowns since taking charge in June 2010.
Lennon has recently been linked with the vacant job at Norwich City.
The news that the Northern Ireland man is parting company with Celtic emerged on Thursday following talks with the Glasgow club.
Lennon said: "I have supported Celtic all my life and the club will always be part of me.
"It was an absolute honour to play for this great club, to captain the team and of course to become Celtic manager, a position which I cherished dearly. However, I feel the time is now right to move on to a new challenge.
"I will now assist the club in appointing my successor. As ever, we will need our fans' support and I am sure they will give the club and the new manager the same great backing which they gave to myself."
It is understood former Hoops captain Lennon has been considering his future for some time.
His agent Martin Reilly told Press Association Sport: "Four years is a good spell to be manager of a club like Celtic but now Neil wants to look ahead to the next chapter of his career."
Neil Lennon won 11 honours as a player with Celtic before joining the coaching staff in 2008.
He took over from Tony Mowbray initially as interim manager before being appointed on a permanent basis for the 2010-11 season.
The Co Armagh man picked up his first trophy as manager with a 3-0 win over Motherwell in the final of the Scottish Cup after narrowly missing out in the SPL and League Cup final.
Celtic were crowned Scottish champions in 2012 before retaining the title in the following two seasons as Neil Lennon became the fourth man in the club's history to win three in a row.
And in a memorable 2013 Champions League campaign, Lennon guided the Hoops to the last 16 of Europe's top club competition with a group stages win over Barcelona along the way.
It now appears Lennon may in be in line to take over in charge of Norwich City who were relegated from the Premier League at the end of this season.
Meanwhile, bookmakers have already instilled former Celtic hero Henrik Larsson - currently in charge of Swedish outfit Falkenbergs - as the 1/3 favourite to replace Lennon as Hoops boss.
Jim Gracey, Sports Editor at the Belfast Telegraph, said the situation has developed rapidly.
He said: "It has come out of the blue and has developed very quickly - first of all Neil has had talks with his board at Celtic and all of a sudden it's announced that Neil is leaving the club.
"The speculation is that Neil is on his way to take the Norwich City job and in Scotland the bookmakers have suspended betting on Henrik Larsson taking over at Celtic Park.
"This is the move people have been predicting for Neil Lennon and it's now answered the question of his ambitions - with no disrespect to Celtic, the way they are in the Scottish league at the minute, they've no-one to challenge them - consequently Neil has nothing to test him.
"Now he has been offered a job in the Premiership, we think, at Norwich City so this is a test of Norwich's ambitions and looks as if Neil is going to go for it."
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