Martin O'Neill won't stand in Roy Keane's way if he's offered the Celtic manager's job 6 years ago

Martin O'Neill won't stand in Roy Keane's way if he's offered the Celtic manager's job

Keane distanced himself from the role vacated by Neil Lennon, but the rumours persist.

Martin O'Neill says he won't try and stop Roy Keane from becoming the new Celtic manager if the opportunity presents itself.

Keane is currently O'Neill's assistant in the Republic of Ireland set-up, but the former Bhoys boss knows that Keane has his eye on returning to full-time management after spells at Sunderland and Ipswich Town.

O'Neill said: "I would say that he would make a good manager, I have always said this about Roy Keane. I think the experiences he has had at Sunderland and Ipswich will stand him in good stead.

"He is naturally disappointed by the Ipswich affair, and it's not something he wants to leave.

"He has this opportunity to come with me as my assistant here at this moment, but I have often said to you that he will be a manager, he will be a manager.

"I think this particular element - it's just my view - is good for him. It gives him a chance to look at it, maybe work with somebody with a bit of experience like myself.

"But he will become a manager, there's no question about it.

"Naturally having brought him in, I'd be disappointed if it went through that he's gone, but I wouldn't really be standing in his way in that sense.

"I'd speak to him, I'd speak to [FAI chief executive] John Delaney as well - I think Roy mentioned that the other day - if that's the case, but it is honestly pure speculation at this minute.

"But it doesn't bother me too much at all - or at least I am trying to show that."