Former Celtic striker, Frank McAvennie reckons that there is more to the Leigh Griffiths saga than meets the eye, with the Scotland international’s fitness – or lack of – being one of a number of issues.
Speaking to Football Insider, McAvennie feels that Neil Lennon will have had a one way conversation with the wayward star ahead of one of the biggest seasons in the club’s history.
So what has McAvennie said?
No stranger to a headline himself, ‘Macca’ thinks that it is the striker’s much publicised social media behaviour that is causing the Celtic gaffer the biggest headache:
“There is a situation with Leigh. There is a problem. We are hearing all sorts of stories. I do not know what the situation is but I do not think it is just because he is a wee bit overweight because the manager has come in and slaughtered him.
“I think it is more to do with this Tik Tok or whatever it is. He is never off it.
“I think Lenny has given him a wee roasting and told him that he is not living in the real world.
“Sometimes a manager has to give a player a kick up the backside and that might be what he needs. Lenny not scared to say something.”
So is McAvennie correct?
The issues are intertwined, Lennon alluded to as much recently when he praised the professionalism of the other members of the squad – Griffiths shouldn’t be getting any preferential treatment, every player was in the same boat and they all managed to meet the demands of the staff.
Being a presence on social media in itself isn’t an issue, but if you aren’t doing your job properly then criticism will never be far from the door, and this is where the striker now finds himself.
The club has backed him on more than one occasion in the past and Lennon obviously feels that he has personally been let down, to say that he doesn’t know what else they can do for him is a damning assessment of Griffiths’s behaviour – if he wants to play for Celtic again, he has a long way to go to earn the trust of his boss, and keeping his head down for a while would be a good start.