Robbie Keane scored again in Celtic’s final game of the season -- but the Ireland captain is adamant the 2-1 win at Hearts will be remembered as his Hoops farewell.
Keane is now officially back at Spurs after his loan spell at Parkhead came to an end on Sunday, and already Champions League bound boss Harry Redknapp has claimed the player’s future is at the club.
Aston Villa’s Martin O’Neill and Sunderland manager Steve Bruce may have other ideas, however, with both expected to bid for Keane in the summer.
Man of the Match Keane scored his 16th goal in 19 Celtic games with the opener at Hearts and told ESPN, “I’m a Tottenham player aren’t I? I’ve got a contract with Tottenham so I will be back there unless someone tells me different.
“I don’t want to be disrespectful to Tottenham, I’ve got a contract there so as far as I’m concerned I will be back there.
“I’m delighted with my goal, obviously, that’s why I’m here, to score goals. I’m judged on scoring goals and I’m happy with my performance.”
Celtic are now entering the “final phase” of the process to find a new manager according to club chairman John Reid, but current captain Scott Brown believes they already have their man in interim boss Neil Lennon.
“Why not let Neil start his management career at Celtic?” asked Brown. “He already has started and we have now won eight league games in a row since Lenny came in.
“We have a great team spirit. The lads enjoy his training, they enjoy him around the dressingroom and enjoy the pressure he puts us under to perform for the fans.
“You know there is a line you can’t cross, you can have a bit of banter but when you start training, it’s serious. I hope the board listens to us but at the end of the day it’s their decision and we have to go along with that decision.”
A statement from chairman Reid, issued after the Hearts game, read, “On behalf of the Celtic Board and supporters I want to extend my thanks to Neil Lennon and his team for taking on the daunting challenge of completing the SPL season and for the way in which this was done.
“The board will now turn to the formal process of considering the appointment of a new manager. We intentionally delayed starting that process until today out of fairness and courtesy to Neil. “This is a big and important decision, and will require a thorough consideration.
“I am well aware that our fans would like us to complete the process as speedily as possible -- commensurate with full consideration -- and we will try to do that.”
Lennon himself said, “When I took on the job as caretaker manager the chairman assured me that there would be no consideration of anyone for that position until I had completed the job I had been given and showed what I could do.
“I am grateful to the board that I was able to carry out my role with the benefit of that assurance. I fully appreciate that this means that they have now to start going through that process of consideration and like everyone else, I hope that can be completed as soon as possible.”
Meanwhile, plans for an Old Firm derby in Boston this summer have collapsed after Rangers pulled out of the proposed game.
And Cameroon midfielder Landry NGuemo has revealed that he wants Celtic to make his loan move from Nancy permanent before the World Cup.