Next Leicester City manager: Celtic and Nottingham Forest legend tipped for shock return to management

Martin O’Neill managed Celtic between 2000-2005 with his last job in management coming with Nottingham Forest in 2019
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Former Celtic manager Martin O’Neill has been tipped for a surprise return to management as Brendan Rodgers’ replacement at Leicester City.

The Foxes parted company with Rodgers on Sunday, after a 2-1 defeat to Crystal Palace left Leicester in the bottom three. Now the Independent reports O’Neill could be appointed on a caretaker basis as they seek to avoid relegation.

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Leicester were beaten 2-1 by Aston Villa on Tuesday night, as they remained in the bottom three but they are just two points adrift of safety in a congested bottom half.

Interim boss Adam Sadler admits he does not know how long he will be in the role after taking charge at the King Power on Tuesday night.

“The club have asked me to take the game tonight, that’s what I have done, I know nothing more than that at this stage,” Sadler said.

“It’s Mike Stowell and me, it’s a partnership, we have tried to pull the guys together over the last couple of days. It has been one of mixed emotions, losing Brendan was a difficult one, he is a top manager we know, but he is also an excellent man and somebody close to all of us here.

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“But the club made a decision. We don’t know anything beyond that at this stage so let’s see what happens over the next few days.

“Until we hear different Mike and I will continue to give everything for the football club, we have been here a long time, we know the people inside out, they know us so if it continues to be us we will give everything for the football club.”

O’Neill has not managed a game competitively since being sacked by Nottingham Forest in the summer of 2019. He enjoyed a fine playing career at the City Ground, racking up close to 400 appearances for the club in a 10-season stay.

He won the European Cup twice as a player and was part of Northern Ireland’s World Cup squad in 1982 as they beat hosts Spain in one of the nation’s most famous victories.

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The 71-year-old moved into management after his playing career. He spent five years with Wycombe Wanderers between 1990 and 1995 and was in charge at Leicester between 1995 and 2000.

He made the move to Celtic in the summer of 2000, the season after Celtic had finished 21 points behind Rangers in the league. His first Old Firm game in charge ended in a famous 6-2 win for Celtic.

O’Neill won the domestic treble in his first season at the club, and claimed two more league titles before leaving in 2005 due to personal circumstances. He had also led the club to the UEFA Cup, now Europa League, final in 2003, which they lost 3-2 to Jose Mourinho’s Porto - as the Portuguese club went on to lift the Champions League a year later.

O’Neill returned to management with Aston Villa in 2006 and had spells at Sunderland and the Republic of Ireland before a six-month spell with Forest.

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