TAKING over the sinking ship at Celtic this season has been a harsh introduction to management for John Kennedy.  

But despite the pressures of the Parkhead hotseat, the 37-year-old believes the experience of this campaign has set him in good stead for a career in management, whatever this summer may have in store for him.  

Eddie Howe is expected to be named Celtic manager in the coming months and it remains to be seen whether Kennedy will be required as part of the former Bournemouth manager’s backroom team.  

The current interim boss has had offers in the past to leave Glasgow and become a manager in his own right, but for the time being Kennedy is adamant that he is in no rush to leave the club he has been part of for the past 22 years.  

“I think I can be [a manager]. In my time as a coach I have had time to work on that and I have never been in a rush,” explained Kennedy. “I have always taken my time and been in a good position where I feel I am developing. That’s important for me.   

“I have been working with good people. The environment has been good the people have been good and I have always continued to develop.   

“When that stops it’s time for the next challenge. But where I am now I don’t need to be in a rush. I just need to deal with the situation we are in and probably come the summer we can sit down and reflect on what the next step is for me.   

“Certainly in the future it’s something I would like to have a go at.”  

Kennedy admits it has been a tough induction into management with Celtic falling at the final hurdle in their quest for 10-in-a-row.  

Asked if three months in charge at Parkhead is the equivalent to three years elsewhere, he responded: “Yeah, especially with the situation we are in now. But it’s great. Once I sit back and reflect on this season it will obviously hurt in terms of the outcome of the league and it being such a big season.  

“But going back to the development side you can’t replicate this in any other way – dealing with the pressure, the setbacks and the situation we have found ourselves in.   

“That will be second to none for me in terms of experience and it will be something I use going forward if I find myself in a similar situation.   

“On a personal level also it’s good to learn from it. I don’t want to be in this situation again, but you spin it and take positives from it.”  

Kennedy is hoping to salvage some pride this season by leading Celtic to a Scottish Cup triumph for the fifth season running.  

To do so, the Hoops will have to overcome Rangers in the fourth round of the competition, but that is a challenge that excites Kennedy.  

He continued: “The game at New Year we performed well until the sending off. Then at Celtic park we were excellent and dominated the game, we should have won albeit we didn’t.   

“The next step is to go and win the game. To do that in a cup tie would be extra special, especially with how we want to finish the season.   

“It’s a good tie for us. An exciting game for everyone and we will be very much fired up for it. We will deal with it when it comes.  

“It’s been a difficult season for everyone with the way it has gone. Especially the fans who can’t attend the games.    

“This is an opportunity to hopefully bring a bit of pride back to the club and the team. It will be a tough game as we know but we are more than capable of going and winning that game and progressing in the cup.”  

During their last four games Celtic have created 95 chances, but only scored five goals. This statistic is a worry for Kennedy and he hopes centre forward Odsonne Edouard can start showing some of his form of old at Ibrox.  

He added: “Sometimes you go through periods in terms of your confidence in front of goal. You might not be as clinical as you can be. But that will come and I can see it coming.   

“It’s just about adding that final bit which is also the hardest. Once you get into a bit of rhythm and flow, I’m hoping the three goals we scored last week brings us a bit of extra confidence.    

“I absolutely love Odsonne in terms of what he gives to the team. The only thing he has really been lacking in the last period is that clinical edge and we have spoken about that.   

“I have worked with many a striker and in terms of the level he can go to, he can go the very top. But he is still young, he is still developing and working. He just needs to add that clinical edge.  

“You see Benzema and Lewandowski, all the top guys, they are ruthless. So that is the next step for Odsonne. It would be very nice to be able to do that in the next game.”