West Bromwich Albion insist they "fully expect" manager Tony Mowbray to be charge of the club next season following speculation linking him with a move to Celtic in the wake of Gordon Strachan's resignation.
Celtic are understood to be weighing up whether to make a formal approach to secure the services of Mowbray, who spent four years with the club as a player in the early 1990s. The 45-year-old is still respected and admired at Parkhead – not only for his performances as a player but for the way he handled the death of his first wife Bernadette through cancer. He also created a favourable impression during his spell in charge of Hibernian before quitting to take charge of the Baggies two and a half years ago.
But Albion have issued a statement reiterating they anticipate Mowbray being at the helm for the 2009-10 campaign. It read: "Tony Mowbray is under contract for the next two years and we fully expect him to be our manager next season. Further than that, the club feels there is no need to comment on speculation."
West Bromwich would seek compensation of around £1m if Mowbray was prised away. He still has two years left on his contract and Celtic would have to pay handsomely for his services – if the Albion chairman, Jeremy Peace, agrees to allow him to leave.