MX23RW : Monday, July 23 02:04:31

Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill rejects Scotland job offer

Northern Ireland boss Michael O'Neill says that he is 'honoured' to have been given the chance to manage Scotland, but turns down the offer to remain in his current job.

Michael O'Neill has rejected the chance to take on the vacant Scotland managerial job to instead remain in charge of Northern Ireland.

The 48-year-old quickly emerged as the Scottish Football Association's top target to replace Gordon Strachan, who was sacked in October following a disappointing World Cup 2018 qualifying campaign.

SFA chiefs made an official approach to their Irish counterparts last week after agreeing to pay a £500,000 compensation fee, but talks have now come to an end as O'Neill has decided to stay at the Windsor Park helm.

In a statement released on Monday afternoon, the ex-Shamrock Rovers boss said: "It's a huge honour to be offered the position; however, I do not feel that this is the right opportunity for me at this moment in my career.

"I would like to place on record my gratitude to the SFA for the very professional manner in which they conducted negotiations and I would also like to wish them every success for the future."

O'Neill, who is also understood to have turned down the Sunderland job in November, was in line to become Scotland's highest-paid manager.

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A general shot of a Premier League football ahead of the Premier League clash between Everton and West Ham United at Goodison Park on October 30, 2016
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