Scotland: Michael O'Neill would be 'silly' to take Scots job, says Michael Smith

Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill
Michael O'Neill has already held talks with the SFA and is set for more

Hearts defender Michael Smith says Michael O'Neill would be "silly" to leave his role as Northern Ireland boss to become the new Scotland manager.

Smith, who has one cap, was part of O'Neill's squad during their recent World Cup qualifying campaign.

O'Neill recently held talks with the Irish FA and is set for more.

"If he wants to change he can go for it but I think he would be silly to. He has done such a great job at Northern Ireland. Why move?" Smith said.

Former Brechin City and Shamrock Rovers manager O'Neill has been offered a new four-year contract to stay as Northern Ireland boss, and is thought to be the Scottish FA's preferred candidate to replace Gordon Strachan.

Michael Smith and Chris Cadden
Hearts defender Smith has earned one cap for Northern Ireland

Having guided his side to the European Championship finals in France in 2016, O'Neill's outfit only missed out on a place at the 2018 World Cup after losing 1-0 to Switzerland in a two-legged play-off.

And as far 29-year-old Smith is concerned, Northern Ireland remain better placed to qualify for a major finals than Scotland.

"At the minute yes," he said. "I think they have done brilliant under Michael in the past few years. I think both countries will come strong again come the next Euro campaign.

"He sets the team up really well. As you can see they have stolen games right at the death when they have been hanging on. He is a great tactician and a great man manager as well."

The Scottish FA will continue to hold talks with O'Neill over the coming weeks but he has also has been linked with a number of jobs, including West Brom, Rangers and even Hearts, over the past few months.

"He has done brilliantly getting to the Euros and just missed out on the World Cup," Smith added.

"There has been a great deal of speculation about his future. I heard he was [linked with Hearts]. He has been talked about with Premier League clubs as well. He probably has a great offer from Northern Ireland as well, and Scotland, so he big big clubs and countries after him."

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