Celtic manager Neil Lennon is prepared to take a different approach in the wake of poor Hoops displays than former boss Brendan Rodgers was, revealing he read the riot act to his players after Sunday’s disappointing draw against Hibernian.
The dour 0-0 stalemate at Easter Road was the third such scoreline for Celtic in the Scottish Premiership since Lennon stepped in to the job in the wake of Rodgers’ controversial departure.
Fans are growing concerned with the faltering performances and Lennon has admitted his own frustration at his players’ failure to find the back of the net consistently.
Asked whether that resulted in players seeing a different side to his personality after the match, Lennon told The Scottish Sun:
Maybe. But I have been involved at this club for a long, long time.
I’m following in great footsteps and maybe it’s not Brendan’s way, the way I approach games.
Listen, I have this reputation as being a hairdryer type manager. Not at all. But there are times when they need to be told and I think Sunday was one of those days.
It would be more of a worry if we weren’t creating chances. Obviously against Hibs we had great chances to win the game.
The nil-nils come from not starting in the right manner, I think, and again we didn’t start in the right manner again against Hibs.
I don’t need to tell the players they need to look at it and analyse it themselves. I don’t think it’s a case of them thinking, ‘We just need to turn up to win the game’. But certainly our play in the final third on Sunday wasn’t at the acceptable level.
It’s certainly been a difficult situation for Lennon to help to players transition from the machine-like Rodgers-era into a season run-in that promises so much yet holds so many pitfalls for the players and his managerial reputation.
He clearly isn’t happy that we are dropping so many points of late and while the club remain undefeated under his guidance, there are real and valid questions about his ability to take the team forward into next season.
Hopefully we now see a reaction to his criticism of the team next time out against Kilmarnock.