The 40-year-old Scot certainly ticks all the boxes in terms of the profile that the Easter Road hierarchy are looking for.
He favours an attacking, high-pressing style and has produced winning teams who compete at the top end of the Skybet Championship.
He said live on BBC radio this week that he is ready to manage in Scotland again, a league he will know well from his Hamilton Accies days.
But Neil himself believes that he has unfinished business in England’s second tier.
He has been strongly linked with the current Ipswich Town vacancy and narrowly missed out of the Sheffield United job which, somewhat ironically, went to former Hibs boss Paul Heckingbottom instead.
Football considerations are of course the main factors in any decision a football manager would make about the future. But there are personal considerations to make too.
Neil is settled in the Preston area and his children go to school there. Uprooting his family to go to Edinburgh, or commuting from Lancashire would not be ideal for his family.
Dave Seddon, Preston North End correspondent for the Lancashire Post, knows Neil well from the Scot’s three years and nine months in charge at Deepdale.
He explained: “I feel he has a little bit of unfinished business here in England. He’s settled here and might fancy another crack at a job.”
“I know he wants to get back to the Championship. He’s settled in the Preston area. To uproot the family at this stage, I’m not sure he would want to do that.
“He was close to the Sheffield United job two or three weeks ago. I think that might have given him a bit of hope about another Championship job in the future. ”
Seddon describes Neil as “driven, focussed and intense” and regards his relatively long tenure at Preston as a success.
He adds: “Whoever gets him, I think will be getting a very good manager.”