NEW Celtic interim assistant manager John Kennedy today insisted the shock departure of Brendan Rodgers’ won’t affect the Parkhead players’ as they attempt to land the treble treble.

Kennedy was a key member of Rodgers’ back room team during the last two-and-a-half years and has stepped up to assist the Northern Irishman's temporary replacement Neil Lennon until the end of the season.

Scott Brown and his team mates have been left stunned by the sudden exit of Rodgers, who agreed to take charge of Premier League club Leicester City yesterday, at this stage in the season.

READ MORE: Neil Lennon isn't thinking about landing the Celtic job full-time - he's concentrating on the treble treble

They are bidding to become the first club in Scottish football history to complete a clean sweep of domestic trophies in three consecutive seasons.

Celtic are eight points clear at the top of the Ladbrokes Premiership heading into their difficult league game against Hearts at Tynecastle this evening and play Hibernian in the William Hill Scottish Cup quarter-final at Easter Road on Saturday evening.

Kennedy admitted there will be speculation linking Celtic players with moves to Leicester in the coming weeks.

But he backed them to maintain their impressive run of form – they have won all nine of their domestic fixtures in 2019 – and land more silverware.

“When managers move there could be movement,” he said. “But the players are fully focused on the here and now. Nobody’s head has been turned. The summer will come, but the players know they are here to the summer to do a job.

“Brendan has done a terrific job and he has decided to move on. But the players have been a massive part of the success as well. They have won two trebles and are sitting in a fantastic position at the moment.

"Neil has been here before so for me the transition will be quite easy. He is very well suited to the job.”

Several Celtic players, including Dedryck Boyata and Mikael Lustig, are out of contract at the end of the 2018/19 campaign while loanees Filip Benkovic, Oliver Burke, Jeremy Toljan and Timothy Weah should return to their parent clubs.

READ MORE: Will Callum McGregor and Kieran Tierney follow Brendan Rodgers to Leicester City?

However, Kennedy stressed that preparations for next season would continue despite Lennon only being put in charge on a temporary basis. “The planning doesn’t stop,” he said. “We know there will be changes in the summer. But it is about the club.”

Asked for his thoughts about Rodgers leaving, Kennedy said: “It is Brendan’s decision. You would have to ask him. He is the only one who could tell you. It is about the club and the players now.

“I spoke to Brendan before he departed Lennoxtown and he filled me in on what was going on. I was asked by the club to prepare the team for Wednesday which I did. The club is most important thing

“I had a very good time here under him. The manager when he was leaving asked me to be prepared to take the team. It has quickly evolved to the situation where Neil has asked me to be his assistant.”