Ronny Deila has decided to leave his position as Celtic manager at the end of the season.The Norwegian has come under increased pressure following Sunday’s Scottish Cup semi-final defeat to Rangers and he will depart Glasgow after the campaign’s final five league matches. Celtic hold an eight-point advantage over Aberdeen with just 15 left to play for and Deila will be allowed to remain in charge to secure his second league title, the club’s fifth successive top flight crown.Celtic’s hierarchy, including majority shareholder Dermot Desmond and chief executive Peter Lawwell, have started the search for a successor with the team set to start their Champions League qualifying campaign on July 12/13 with the return leg on July 19/20.In a statement, Deila said: “It is vital that the club comes first and instead of me being the focus, hopefully now the team and the club can be the focus as we enter this final important period of the season. As part of their preparations for this summer’s Euro games, Celtic will take part in the International Champions Cup facing English Premier League leaders Leicester City at Celtic Park on July 23. Barcelona will provide the opposition in Dublin on July 30, between the two legs of the third round of Champions League qualification.A further match against Inter Milan will take place on August 13 with a venue yet to be announced for the game. “It was an absolute privilege to be named manager of Celtic, such a wonderful football club, and I have enjoyed my time here immensely. I will never forget the welcome I received almost two years ago at Celtic Park from so many fans.”After arriving from Stromsgodset to replace Neil Lennon in the summer of 2014, Deila won a domestic double in his first season, claiming the Premiership crown and beating Dundee United in the League Cup final. However criticism has been aimed at the 40-year-old following poor results in Europe as well as questions over his side’s style of play, team selection and his relationship with several senior players.Celtic were beaten by Legia Warsaw and Maribor in the 2014/15 Champions League qualifiers while a play-off defeat to Malmo saw them miss out on Europe’s top club competition one year later. Promising performances in the Europa League against Inter Milan in February 2015 were quickly forgotten after the Hoops failed to record a single victory as they finished bottom of a group including Fenerbahce, Ajax and Molde.Deila’s quest to win this season’s treble came to an end in January after a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Ross County in the League Cup semi-final and supporters voiced their frustration during March’s 0-0 home draw with Dundee. Celtic host County this Sunday with Deila’s final match in charge to come against Motherwell on May 15.
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