Celtic appear close to securing the services of Brendan Rodgers for a second time after pushing the boat out to bring their former manager back as Ange Postecoglou’s successor.
The Hoops have been on the hunt for a new boss since the Australian sealed his move to Tottenham last Tuesday.
After being linked with Manchester City assistant Enzo Maresca, Bodo/Glimt boss Kjetil Knutsen and West Ham manager David Moyes, among others, the Celtic board have now homed in on Rodgers, with whom they met in Majorca last weekend to initiate discussions.
The Northern Irishman left Celtic to take over at Leicester almost four and a half years ago, but he now appears set for a return to the club at which he won all seven domestic trophies available to him while laying the foundations for a remarkable quadruple-treble that was completed by his successor Neil Lennon.
Rodgers – who has also been linked with the Leeds vacancy – was barely backable with bookmakers to become the next Celtic manager on Wednesday, available at just 1/14 with Sky Bet at 6pm, amid suggestions that talks are firmly at the “advanced” stage.
The 50-year-old has reportedly been offered a salary that eclipses what he earned in his previous stint at Celtic as the Scottish champions – fresh from sealing their latest domestic treble – attempt to build on the impressive work carried out by Postecoglou over the past two years.
Rodgers, who first took the reins at Celtic in the summer of 2016, left in February 2019 amid talk that he was dissatisfied with certain aspects of the running of the club.
It is claimed he has sought assurances during talks in recent days that he will be backed in terms of recruitment to ensure the team is adequately equipped for their upcoming tilt at the Champions League group stages.
The Hoops managed a meagre two points from their six games in the competition under Postecoglou last term, while they collected only three points in each of the two campaigns in which Rodgers oversaw group-stage qualification, in 2016 and 2017.
If, as looks increasingly likely, Celtic get a deal over the line in the coming days, Rodgers will begin the task of trying to maintain Celtic’s domestic dominance – with renewed competition anticipated from a Rangers side showing signs of improvement under Michael Beale – while also preparing his squad for the Champions League, which gets under way in just over three months.
In addition, the former Swansea and Liverpool boss will have to win over a section of the Celtic fanbase who remain irked at the manner and timing of his departure, when the Hoops were just a few months shy of completing the treble-treble.
Rodgers left Leicester in April following just over four predominantly fruitful years at the King Power Stadium, and – as was the case when he moved north seven years ago in the wake of his sacking from Liverpool – he seems ready to head to Celtic once more in a bid to get himself back on an upward curve.