Date: 14th August 2019 at 11:08am
Written by:

In the aftermath of a night like that, fans want to see people assume their share of the blame.

They want to see people step up and acknowledge their role in what happened.

If you were on Twitter last night you’ll have seen that Scott Brown accidently “liked” a tweet that slagged off the manager and half the board.

It’s what he did next that impressed me.

Not only did he admit to the mistake, but he took the full responsibility for the defeat.

He did not hide behind “collective” responsibility, he took it onto his shoulders.

Some will say that was appropriate considering his performance, but actually as I said to him in response there were some extenuating circumstances in his case, namely the moving of McGregor out of the position where he usually gives Brown support. That one change impacted the whole team.

And the responsibility for that dire decision, that tactical calamity, lies with only one person; Neil Lennon.

Who said last night that “everyone” shares the blame but took not one iota of it in his public statements.

It was the fault of everyone except Neil Lennon.

Which is absolute garbage, I’m afraid.

The crucial decisions which caused that disaster were solely his. His tactics were rank. His substitutions were a joke.

His decision to bench Bolingoli was gutless and gave succour to those in the press who have spent the last fortnight trying to destabilise the player.

They would have failed except for the manager’s decision.

Don’t even get me started on the junking of Scott Sinclair, the non-event that is Bayo, the mystery that is Marian Shved’s absence or the £7 million defender he left sitting in a plastic seat as our defence creaked and finally crumbled.

Mikey Johnson is a damned fine player but he is not remotely ready to cover the left side alone with no full-back. The like for like change which brought on Lewis Morgan was a waste of a substitution and a chance to make a tactical shift at a crucial time.

The decision to persevere, against all logic, with Scott Bain at the moment is ridiculous and fatally flawed.

How high does the price-tag have to get here?

We’re out of the Champions League.

We lost Tierney and all the money will do is plug a hole in the balance sheet, not the gaping wound on the left side of the pitch, where we are dangerously exposed.

Lennon will not accept blame for any of it, and his comments after the game about how this will affect his transfer prospects is a white flag waved in front of a director’s box where, the result apart, they must have been grinning like Cheshire cats.

They have nothing to worry about here, they have this guy well under control and they know it.

The manager will not rock the boat; he understands “reality” as they see it.

The balance sheet comes first.

When myself and others railed against the appointment of Lennon it was not because we feared for nine in a row; I don’t think he will throw that away. His domestic record – in the league at least – is too good for that. Our concern was that he was completely the wrong appointment for taking the club to the next level in Europe, that and his decision making and the idea that he was hired because he is pliable and easy to please and won’t contradict the strategy.

All of those worries have been given shape in a single night, and his penchant for blaming other people when he is the cause of a setback remains just as acute as it ever was.

His decisions here are why we are not in the Champions League this morning, and he can shunt the responsibility up or down or sideways as he likes, but the truth is he blew it big time.

Others must bear their own share of the responsibility of this disgrace, and they will not be spared scrutiny today.

The next article is on everyone’s favourite CEO, who hired Lennon and ignored every other candidate, even those who offered their services.

“We had approaches from many, many agents, many representatives of managers across the board,” he boasted in May. “We put them in the file, just left it and kept our word to Neil.”

For that, alone, for something so unprofessional, for something so lax, our most highly paid employee should have been run out of town on a rail.

Last night his decision cost this club a potentially huge sum of money and a loss in status and prestige which can’t even be quantified.

Many of us are worried it is only the first instalment of a very big bill coming due.