NEIL Lennon looks happy, relaxed, a man comfortable with where he is. Out of Hibernian and out of work. At least for now.

It’s only been a few weeks since that strange Friday night when he and his coaching staff were sacked, quit, or suspended. Whatever happened, and this wasn’t the time of place for him to talk about it (pesky confidential stuff), his time at Easter Road was over.

So, what now for the Northern Irishman? He will take the next few months off, as a pundit he is in demand, and then “the itch will come” and he’ll look to get back into the madness. Where that will be, he’s still not sure except for one thing. He won’t repeat the mistake of Bolton.

“With some jobs you’re firefighting, just going in and troubleshooting and that doesn't appeal to me at all. I've not really given it much thought about going back into the game just yet.”

That does narrow down his options. He could go abroad, something he almost did years ago, there is always England of course, but this is a man who loves Scottish football and there is always that link to Celtic Park.

This is part romantic, part pragmatic. Should there be a change, and Lennon knows how much that job takes out of a man, would he ever return if Brendan Rodgers decides after three seasons of domination that he’s taken Celtic as far as he can.

Lennon agreed that the job of Celtic manager does have a shelf life.

“It’s the energy as well," he said. "You would need to ask Brendan how he's feeling. We are sitting here talking about, and I can't believe it, the possibility of a treble Treble, which is just bonkers. It's just amazing consistency and they always seem to find a way to beat the opposition, whether they are playing well going into the game or not, so the mentality he's brought to the place and the style of play is fantastic. Now whether it's enough for him, is a question that only Brendan will answer.”

Lennon spent four years and knew in 2015 that if anything he had spent a season too long at Celtic Park. He kept losing players, the budget wasn’t to his liking and something else, something important was missing which, irony of ironies made his mind up to part company with his one true love.

He said: “Having to keep rebuilding the team was part of it but, in my time, there was no Rangers either and we had won the league by March. I think we ended up winning it by late 20s to 30 points. That was the end of four years and you are just thinking, 'I need a break'. Personally, I need a break for myself more than anything else. That was a major factor in wanting to take a step out.

“I knew right away. A lot of energy had gone by then and I needed the break. I needed it for myself because I had put a lot of energy into it.

“I’ve never really regretted my decision. Hindsight is a wonderful thing but it's how you are feeling at that particular moment in time. I left the club on good terms, which was important to me. You always have a tingling of regret, thinking about what you could or couldn't have achieved, but not really.”

The no Rangers aspect was important. Lennon loved the challenge as a player, captain, coach with Gordon Strachan and then for two seasons as manager.

The fans would have him back. Lennon is a better manager than before but, wisely, he will let others speculate.

“I wouldn't comment on that. They have a brilliant manager in place there, so I wouldn't even... How do you follow that…a treble Treble? Winning the Champions League?

“I can’t speculate on that. I wouldn’t even try to pre-empt what Brendan might be thinking or say something that might upset the supporters or anyone else. It will be down to Brendan and the way he is feeling. If he does do a treble Treble, does he think well what more can I achieve?”

Had Lennon stayed on at Hibernian, where he was popular with the supporters at least, this might have been his final season in charge. He admitted there was unfinished business.

“Winning a cup would have been nice and I think we would have made the top six as well.”

Things, as know, turned out differently which means when Hibs and Celtic meet in a Scottish Cup quarter-final at Easter Road, the 48-year-old will be an interested spectator.

Lennon said: “It's a good tie. Hibs have had a fair amount of joy against Celtic, particularly at Easter Road, since they've come back up, so it's not as easy one for Celtic. It was a pivotal weekend just there for them in the league, it gives them a nice cushion going forward. I'm sure it will reinforce their efforts to get through the tie but Hibs will have a big say in that.

"If you ask the Hibs supporters, the most important in their lives as Hibs supporters was winning the Scottish Cup. That means everything to them. Going forward, they might not be able to replicate that moment again - but the Cup now is big proposition for Hibs.”

Lennon had a good record against Celtic and Paul Heckingbottom, the new manager in Leith, would do well to take some advice from the man who not so long go sat in his office.

"The first time we played them at Easter Road, we were forced to go with one striker and we were 2-0 down with 10 minutes to go and ended up drawing 2-2, we were lucky,” recalled Lennon.“We were fortunate to get the point that day because when you play one up against them you give the onus to Celtic because they will play out from the back and dominate the ball and at times their movement through midfield into the wide men is very good.

“We changed then and either went 3-5-2 or with a diamond, just to stop them from playing out and getting into a rhythm and more or less turning it into 50-50 football where you could get knockdowns and get into the final third bit quicker.

"We tried the same system we used at Easter Road at Celtic Park and it quite clearly wasn't going to work that day, so there are times you can go for them but at Easter Road - the pitch is smaller, it's not as wide - you can try and take the game to Celtic and it gets the crowd going. If you sit off them, they will pass you to death and that just wasn't the way I wanted to play against them.”

Neil Lennon was speaking at a William Hill media event. William Hill is the proud sponsor of the Scottish Cup.