Callum McGregor has no doubt that John Kennedy will go onto a forge a fine career in management when the Celtic assistant steps out on his own two feet – but the Parkhead captain hopes that day remains some way off in the distance.

Kennedy has been an important member of the club’s backroom staff for years and his success on the training pitch has earned him a reputation as one of Scotland’s most promising up-and-coming coaches.

The 39-year-old is said to be a candidate to land the permanent Hearts job – current boss Steven Naismith is occupying the dugout on an interim basis – and while McGregor is convinced that Kennedy has the makings of an excellent manager, he is keeping his fingers crossed that the former defender won’t be temped to make the short journey along the M8 anytime soon.

READ MORE: Ange Postecoglou breaks Celtic silence on John Kennedy to Hearts speculation

“Can I understand why clubs would look at him? Absolutely,” McGregor said. “John has been a massive part of our success for many years.

“He has been a huge part of things under the gaffer and I am not surprised teams are looking to take him.

“Selfishly, we want to keep him for as long as we can. A lot of the work John does goes under the radar but the people at the club understand his value as an assistant manager.

“I am sure he will go on to be a top manager too as he’s been outstanding, but hopefully we can keep him for as long as possible.”

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