BE PART OF THE TEAM

Access exclusive podcasts, interviews and analysis with a monthly or annual membership

Become A Member
Dublin: 9°C Thursday 25 February 2021
Advertisement

Defiant manager Neil Lennon tells Celtic bosses they will have to sack him

The Armagh man saw his side held 2-2 at Livingston to trail Rangers by 20 points in the title race.

Snow joke: Lennon's side dropped more points.
Snow joke: Lennon's side dropped more points.
Image: PA

NEIL LENNON HAS told Celtic they will have to sack him if they want a new boss after insisting he will not quit his Parkhead job.

The Hoops’ campaign of woe plunged to new depths as they dropped points for the fourth match in a row following a 2-2 draw at Livingston.

Skipper Scott Brown was sent off just five minutes after coming on as a substitute as frustrations at the unravelling of the champions’ season boiled over.

The result leaves Lennon’s team 20 points adrift of runaway Premiership leaders Rangers with two games in hand and their dreams of 10-in-a-row now surely dead.

The furious Parkhead faithful have made their feelings abundantly clear already in recent weeks, demanding Lennon goes.

But the Armagh man said: “I won’t walk away, absolutely not. I’ve put too much into this. Too much of my life. And a month ago we won the treble.

“We’ve lost two games in the league. Europe wasn’t good enough and we’re out of the League Cup. But we’re human beings and we haven’t played well for whatever reason.

“We can analyse it to death. Maybe no fans has had an adverse effect, I don’t know. But they haven’t reached the levels of last season by any stretch of the imagination.

“I haven’t changed my procedures, my philosophy hasn’t changed but for some reason too many haven’t reached anywhere near their levels.

“If the club have to make a decision then they have to make a decision. You’re asking the wrong guy about my position.

“I’m fed up answering it really. Everyone is interested in my job. You keep asking if I’m going to be here. I will be until I’m told otherwise.

“There have been many (fans who don’t support me) like that since I got the job. But we’ve won five trophies out of six. Not bad.”

Be part
of the team

Access exclusive podcasts, interviews and analysis with a monthly or annual membership.

Become a Member

Lennon came out swinging on Monday as he hit back at his club’s Dubai critics following their controversial winter training camp.

But the only man in green and white to land a telling blow was Brown, who was dismissed just moments after being introduced from the bench after aiming a flailing arm at Livi’s Irish debutant, Jaze Kabia.

livingston-v-celtic-scottish-premiership-toni-macaroni-arena Brown sees red after a foul on Irishman, Kabia. Source: PA

And Lennon could not defend the defensive display of his team after seeing the Hoops fail to win four league games in a row for the first time since April 2000.

Kristoffer Ajer was guilty of switching off as Ciaron Brown headed Livi in front but the Hoops did hit back through Mohammed Elyounoussi and Nir Bitton.

However, their fragility at the back was exposed yet again in the 60th minute as Jay Emmanuel-Thomas fired David Martindale’s impressive Lions level.

“We have to do better, win the game and defend properly,” said Lennon.

“At their first goal, Brown brushes off Kris and it’s not good enough. We chase the game, play brilliantly to get back into it and in the second half we were excellent until the goal.

“The second is a poor goal to concede. It was symptomatic of us. There have been too many draws this season – seven draws have really hampered us.

“The sending-off is disappointing. Scott should know better. It was totally unnecessary. I’ll need to see it again to have an opinion but I’m told it’s a red. Ill discipline has cost us.”

Martindale rested seven players ahead of Sunday’s Betfred Cup semi-final with St Mirren but Livi were still able to keep their 10-game unbeaten run under the new boss going.

About the author:

Press Association

Read next:

COMMENTS (11)

This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel