MALKY Mackay has admitted he could look to bounce back from his sacking at Wigan Athletic with a fresh start in his native Scotland.
The 43-year-old was relieved of his duties at the DW Stadium last month following the 2-0 home defeat to Derby that left Latics teetering on the brink of relegation to League One.
I’m passionate about it. I really enjoyed my time at the clubs I’ve been at and I think I’ve helped to build the clubs I’ve been atMalky Mackay
Mackay had only taken charge in November, but was unable to turn around a poor start under Uwe Rosler.
However, rather than take his time and contemplate his next step, Mackay is anxious for a swift return to management – possibly north of the border – to rebuild his battered reputation.
He also admitted a return to Celtic, the club he served for several years as a player, would be impossible to turn down.
“The Celtic job, I don’t think there is anyone that would look at it and say that they wouldn’t want it,” Mackay acknowledged.
“Obviously you are very respectful to who is in a job, but it’s a huge, worldwide job.
“I’ve been there inside the fabric of that football club during a very colourful period in its history.
“It’s an institution. You only need to look at the fan base worldwide and the potential, in terms of what a couple of the managers recently have done in Europe, to see how good a job that is.”
A cloud continues to hang over Mackay, with the FA still investigating claims he exchanged texts of a racist, sexist and homophobic nature during his time in charge at Cardiff.
But he says that won’t put him off seeking future employment in the game.
“I have made mistakes, I said that at the time,” he told BBC Radio Scotland’s Sportsound.
“But I would ask people to judge me on the person they know and what I have been in the last 20 years in football.
“I really enjoy football management and I think it’s something I’m cut out for.
“I’m passionate about it. I really enjoyed my time at the clubs I’ve been at and I think I’ve helped to build the clubs I’ve been at.
“To be a manager, you’ve got to have mental strength and that toughness in terms of being able to take criticism and have belief in what you’re doing on the pitch.”
Mackay also insisted he’d be willing to take a job further down the pyramid to prove his capabilities again.
“For a manager, one of the attractions is to build your own team, maybe not on a huge budget,” he added.
“As a football manager, it’s about what you do with the budget you’re given.”
Mackay was in charge of 24 matches as Wigan boss, picking up a mere 19 points from a possible 72 on offer.
He departed with the club eight points adrift of safety with five matches remaining, and was replaced by Gary Caldwell, who recorded one win, one draw and three defeats as relegation to League One was confirmed with a game to spare.