Scotland job could appeal to Michael O’Neill – Brendan Rodgers

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers believes Northern Ireland boss Michael O’Neill would have plenty of talent to work with if he were to become Scotland manager.

The Scottish FA this week made an official approach to the Irish FA for permission to speak to Michael O’Neill, who is the top candidate to succeed Gordon Strachan.

O’Neill is approaching his sixth year in charge of Northern Ireland and Rodgers thinks the 48-year-old would be taking charge of a side with ambition.

“If it is Michael then he can look and see there is a really talented group of players there that are developing very well,” he said.

“There is a nucleus of a very exciting squad and you go into the European Championship next year and feel you would have a chance of qualifying.

“If he is looking at Scotland he might think, ‘Okay, there is a really good bunch of players here that are developing and there is a chance to get them to the Euros and then obviously on to the World Cup after that’. If he sees that as a challenge then I think Scotland is a great job for someone.”

Uncertainty over O’Neill’s future has sparked speculation over who might replace him as Northern Ireland boss, should he leave Windsor Park.

Hibernian head coach Neil Lennon is keen to stay in club management but St Johnstone’s Tommy Wright and Motherwell boss Stephen Robinson are obvious candidates and have both worked on O’Neill’s coaching staff.

Wright stressed he was happy in Perth and added: “My chairman (Steve Brown) wants me to stay longer. When we signed the last contract, and that was quite a while ago, he said that one day, when you leave here, it could be for your
national team job.

Robinson admitted it was a “massive honour” to be linked with his national team job.

The 42-year-old added: “To manage your country and even be linked with that is huge.

“I take great pride in being from Northern Ireland and being part of the set-up before was a massive part of things for me.

“It’s great but as it stands at this moment in time, I’m the Motherwell manager, I’m very much enjoying it and Michael is the manager of Northern Ireland, we must not forget.

“He hasn’t made that decision yet so at the minute nothing changes and I’m very happy at Motherwell.”

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