Jonny Hayes has not got a shred of doubt John Kennedy will one day be his own man in the dugout.

And the Hoops ace is hoping when the time comes that it will be in the Celtic Park hotseat.

Hayes isn’t shocked to hear the Parkhead coach being linked with the vacant gaffer’s job along the M8 at Hibs .

Kennedy has a rock-solid reputation in the game and has been a major part of Celtic ’s success story in recent years.

He has built a body of work on the training ground having started with the youths following his career-ending injury.

He joined Ronny Deila’s backroom team and then landed a prominent role alongside Brendan Rodgers .

The Northern Irishman was keen to take him to Leicester but Kennedy stayed put to remain part of Neil Lennon ’s staff and Hayes reckons the coach will resist the chance to branch out for himself by taking the Easter Road job.

The wideman said: “I can’t see it myself. It’s obvious he’s going to be a manager one day. The work here he does, he’s been enormous behind the scenes.

“He was a great player but he’s an outstanding coach. He’s Celtic through and through as well, so I can’t see him leaving. At least I hope not!”

Hayes – man of the match in the 2-0 win over Motherwell – revealed Kennedy has played a huge part in making him feel comfortable as a makeshift left-back.

He said: “I’d played there before but it’s hard trying to learn a new position and picking it up as quickly as possible.

“I feel I am learning every time I play there but it’s great to be able to bounce questions off John.

“He’s a fantastic coach who really knows the defensive side of the game.

“He’s been a real comfort blanket for me and I always talk to him about it after the games. He reassures me and gives me confidence.”

Kennedy provides the confidence but it’s skipper Scott Brown who gives this Celtic side their inspiration.

The Hoops were running on fumes against Well yesterday following their stunning win against Lazio in Rome just three days earlier.

Hayes reckons Brown’s fitness almost defies belief after he managed to drag shattered Celts to another key win against the sturdy Steelmen.

He added: “The captain leads by example. But the workrate week in week out of the likes of Browny, Callum McGregor and Ryan Christie, it’s second nature at this stage.

“Especially as some of the players have been playing 60 games a season for the last three or
four years.

 

“The captain has got a bit of Benjamin Button about him!

“He has proved people wrong with how fit he is. His determination in games is incredible. We look up to him.

“The squad is a fit and strong squad. We have no qualms about playing two or three games a week.

“It was good to have a home game – with all the supporters there in a packed stadium and with a good football pitch you don’t need any extra incentive to go and perform on the back of Thursday night.

“It was a good result for the club but we came back to a home game in front of a full house. All the motivation we needed was there.

“Obviously three points was the most important thing. But it was important we put on a decent display as well on the back of Thursday night.

“The manager made sure that we didn’t dwell on that.”

Hayes was thrilled to play a part in the win but admitted his man of the match display was motivated by his task to win over his son rather than the desire to secure a new deal.

The 32-year-old’s contract is up at the end of the season and he would love to finish his career at Parkhead.

 

Boss Lennon also hinted an offer could be in the post but Hayes is only thinking about keeping his youngster happy.

He added: “My son at home is my biggest critic.

“I got back in from Rome at 5am and he woke me up at 8am to tell me I was at fault for a couple of free-kicks! When you get that at home everything else pales into insignificance.

“I’ve got two young kids to provide for and that’s my motivation, whether it’s here, there or anywhere.

“I take my football day by day, I don’t think about the future. What will be will be.

“To be honest, I was just happy to be out there playing football, as long as we won.

“We finished the last run of games on a defeat and we wanted to make sure that didn’t happen again today.

“I thought we played well right from the first whistle. It was thoroughly deserved. I knew when I signed here I was going to be in and out sometimes.

“I know how the squad works here but I won’t complain. I’ve cherished every minute I’ve had on the pitch since I got the injury.

“I’m always there when the manager calls.”