BRENDAN Rodgers has tipped Kilmarnock manager Derek McInnes to land a job at the highest level in future and admitted he will be prepared to vouch for the Scot if he is sounded out about his suitability for a vacancy at a leading club in England in future.

Rodgers is a long-term admirer of McInnes, who was yesterday installed as the favourite to take over at Hibernian following the sacking of Nick Montgomery, and is unsurprised he has led the Rugby Park club to fourth place in the cinch Premiership this term.

The Northern Irishman knows that his charges, who have lost both of their games on the artificial pitch in Ayrshire in the past 10 months, will need to be at their very best to win their penultimate league match this evening.

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“He's an excellent manager with great experience,” he said. “He knows what he wants from his team. You've seen the fantastic job that he did at Aberdeen.

"Everything that he did there, bringing them to European football, challenging for trophies, making them super competitive, it's arguable that they haven't been the same since he left.

“He's obviously come to Kilmarnock, and looks like he's found that again and has an owner that really backs him. He did a great job getting out of the championship, stabilised in the first year and then able to build on it. They've been very, very good.

“I'm not surprised by it. I know Derek and his level. Whatever plaudits he gets, he thoroughly deserves them. He's given great value to his work.”

The Herald: Brendan Rodgers, right, applauds the Celtic fans at Parkhead on Saturday after his side's 2-1 winRodgers continued: “I've said that I’m surprised he hasn’t worked at a higher level before. He obviously had spells down there, Bristol City earlier in his career. I think what Derek has shown is that he's an excellent manager and I would always speak very highly of him if I was ever asked for any position.

“I think that'll come. He's still young, he's still got a lot of years left as a manager and he still has the hunger. I've got no doubt he will get that opportunity. He seems very happy in the job that he's doing at Kilmarnock, but I've no doubt that he'll get other opportunities at a higher level.”

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Asked about the meeting with Kilmarnock at Rugby Park this evening, he said: “We expect it will be a tough game for us. We haven't been great in the two games. We had a half where we were comfortable in the game and we conceded a couple of poor goals and ended up losing the game 2-1.

“We are ready for a tough game against a team who are very effective, very well-coached and very well-organised. They have got experienced players and we have to be ready for the duels. We also need to be ready to play our football and that's what we have been preparing for.”