Celtic Family Unites – ‘We stand behind our Leader – One Neil Lennon’

NEIL LENNON is already planning how he’ll take Celtic forward from Hampden after picking up the Scottish Cup to complete the Treble Treble and then being offered the permanent position as the Celtic manager in the shower area in the dressing room.

“I know what I want to do,” Lenny said. “It’s been a privilege to manage them the first time and to do it for the second time is just unbelievable really, it’s great. I’ll take stock of things, obviously I have a lot to think about. I’m still quite emotional at the minute – there is a lot to take in. There is a lot to think about. But, again, when you get offered a job like this it’s really, really difficult to turn it down.”

The vast majority of The Celtic Family are now coming together to back Neil Lennon – whether in favour of him getting the job or not. Many, like ourselves, will now watch very carefully to see if Peter Lawwell backs the new manager with the funds necessary and if he doesn’t he’ll find that the same unity will be shown among the support to condemn any frustration, delay, penny pinching or anything else along those lines.

Neil Lennon is a Celtic legend. He deserves our support. He will get it but it will only work if he is backed by the Board.  This is the message from Green and White Glasgow on Sunday.

Lenny appreciates the divide that existed among the support and understands it entirely. He knows that there is always pressure when you are the manager of Celtic – he was 3-0 down at Rugby Park at half-time in October  2011 and was considering his position seriously – oh will they say we failed?

No, actually, his Celtic side fought back to earn a draw that day, Lenny’s side never looked back and we were on our way to One in a Row!

“There is always pressure at Celtic,” he told the media, as reported by Scotsman. “You just have to not listen to expectations. I will talk to the board and find out what they want. I will stick to that task.

“The first treble season under Brendan was incredible, so anything after that was going to be a regression anyway. But they’ve gone on to win another two trebles after that. It was impossible to maintain that level of performance and level of result, that was an incredible standard and benchmark that probably won’t be repeated,” Lenny noted.

He then turned his attention to those glory nights at the top table in the Champions League, without taking his eye off the main objective for next season – winning 9 in a row.

“The Champions League would be an attraction for any manager at Celtic. First and foremost, the priority is the league championship and then you work around that from here on in. But it would be fantastic.

“It’s brilliant for the club, the players, me and my coaching staff. It can only help you and develop you but it’s a very difficult thing to do, we have eight games before we can qualify. We have to hit the ground running very, very early and again that’s going to be difficult but we’re going to have to get the right players in as quickly as possible and that can be difficult as well.

“We are looking at players. We have identified two or three players for a couple of positions already. Myself, John Kennedy and the recruitment team have been working very hard in the background. We will see if we can get the ball rolling soon too.

“We were nine points clear in the league at the end of the season. There is no doubt there is a marked improvement in Rangers but you would expect that and we have to try to endeavour to stay that bit further ahead. I think that’s the whole remit.

“At the minute, I haven’t given it much thought. I’ll compute it all and take it all in over the next couple of days and probably have a bit more for you on that.”

Lenny led Celtic to the first 3 league titles in this push for Ten in a Row but then handed over the baton to Ronny Deila for flag wins 4 and 5 before Rodgers came in for 6 and 7 and the 2/3s of the 8th title win before he jumped ship. Does Lenny have any regrets about leaving the Celtic job when he did?

“At the time, it felt for me like the right thing to do. I left on my own terms and it was in my mind to maybe come back one day. I’ve had four years and it’s been tough.

“There have been highs and lows but I have learned a lot, so to be offered the opportunity again? I wasn’t going to give that up easy.

“You need the highs and you need the lows. It’s never plain sailing and big Sam Allardyce always told me you’re not really a proper manager until you get the sack. So it’s a really good learning curve and I’ve also learned a lot in these last two and a half months about myself more than anything else.

“It’s been really tough coming in, but I think I’ve mellowed and I’m more rounded and don’t get too agitated by a world of false news, Twitter and social media. You have to ignore all that and concentrate on what you do and keep your integrity. If you believe you are doing the right things you can’t get too upset.”

About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email editor@thecelticstar.co.uk

Comments are closed.