The Ex-Celtic Boss Knows Exactly What He’s Doing In Noising Up The Ibrox Club.

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Neil Lennon has had one hell of a start to the week. You know, the more I listen to him doing the punditry bit the happier I am about it. I realise that he misses being a manager, and he would do anything to get back in the dugout. But I wonder if he realises that right now, he’s his best self. He looks good. He sounds good. He’s relaxed.

Punditry suits him, and although I think he’s lacking certain things as a coach he is a superb analyst and is completely unafraid to speak his mind. Those are priceless assets in a business full of people who are incapable of the first and who have mistaken trolling for the much harder job of telling truth to power and making some enemies along the way.

Lennon is brilliant at it, and after a weekend where his son was treated to vile and disgusting behaviour at the hands of the Ibrox fans, he could not help but poke them with a stick. I loved it. That’s Lennon at his best, at striking back, at not taking it lying down, at making sure they remember all the times he owned them in games both as a player and as a boss.

My old man and I were talking the other day after I finished my article on what his son had to endure, about that Ibrox match where O’Neill was so disgusted by what he had to tolerate that he walked him across to the Celtic fans and they showed him such support. My old man was at that game and he says he’s never walked out of there after a defeat feeling on such a high.

That was a magnificent moment. Lennon’s courage in that spell, and later on, were inspirational. I may have had issues with him as a manager, but Lennon, the man, is a hero of mine.

So, when he’s on the ball, as he is right now, it is great to see.

Speaking to the outlet PLZ, he was scathing about the Ibrox club. “They still haven’t got that mentality yet of squashing that hold that Celtic have over them and they need to break that if they’re going to win the league,” he said. “And to do that they need to bring in either players of better quality or better mentality.”

This achieves two things. It puts pressure on the players currently at Ibrox by putting the issue of their mentality front and centre and it puts pressure on their board to deliver for the manager in a way they certainly are not able to do at this time.

There is a crazy genius in Lennon’s comments, and I am pretty sure he knew what he was doing when he was dishing that out. The current Ibrox squad is full of losers and it never hurts to hammer that point home.

The media today is trying to suggest that they are about to spend £4 million on the midfielder from Denmark; that is such a ridiculous story that I am astounded that anyone can possibly believe it. They have spent the last few weeks trying to sell players because that’s the only way they can spend any significant sum.

The truth is, the media as a whole isn’t going to put them under the spotlight in this way and this is why Lennon is doing it. Raising the twin issues of their mentality and the needs of the squad is smart stuff, because it’s an appeal over the heads of the club to the very same fans who taunted his boy and wished him dead; even in hating him, they know he’s got this right … and that will mess with their heads more than anything.

Because he’s saying nothing they haven’t been saying themselves, and that will hurt and that will resonate and when this window shuts, if they’ve not done more business, their fans will look at that squad and conclude that it is still too weak … and that will see them turn inward and direct their unending hatred at their club once more.

He still knows how to get inside their heads. It’s great to see.

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  • Tony B says:

    The huns are the unhealthiest and unhappiest creatures in football: constantly angry and full of hatred for Catholics, Irish people, people of colour and each other a lot of the time.

    In evolutionary terms they will die out because of this, the sooner the better for civilisation’s sake.

    • Robert says:

      You are one bigoted beasty bhoy hatred for catholics and Irish people you state don’t think so it’s hatred for wee dafties like you who hide behind the cloak of the beast.

  • Kevan McKeown says:

    It’s a completely shameful situation and a sad blight on society, when the media, newspaper and radio, have completely ignored this, especially when it was directed at a youngster. These jokers who all suffer from ‘selective hearing’ and always quick tae claim their papers have ‘integrity’ are a fkn disgrace.

  • JimBhoy says:

    We are needing more braver columnists, journos, pundits to raise questions and not just speculate on who teams are interested in.

    They don’t even have to be so forthright just raise the qn, Can rangers afford £4m for a player? Would they not need to sell first, large inflated squad etc. That’s not doing anything bar raising legit questions. It may turn out this guy comes in at £1.5m over 3 payments but that suggests he may not be the up and coming star they purport he is at that outlay and would be much of a project. Still could prove a good buy and some amy move to accommodate.

  • Leon says:

    Neil Lennon Won his first 16 League games as the Celtic manager.
    He won the last 8 League matches of the season,after taking over from Tony Mowbray.
    Neil also Won his first 8 League matches the following season.
    Lennon’s run came to an end,when Willie Collum decided to give a penalty against Celtic with his back turned.

    • James Forrest says:

      But that can’t possibly BE! Willie Collum is a diehard Celtic man, don’t you know? 😉

  • Greengrass says:

    Was at that same game as your old man James. Left there that day as happy as if we had won. Will never forget it.

  • Zeddy says:

    “Something inside so strong”

    Nobody should have to endure what that man and his family suffered for being associated with our club. Despite his failings,every fan should have his back.

    How many of us would stand and repeatedly face real prejudice the way he and his family continue to do.

    I for one wouldn’t

  • John S says:

    It’s difficult to denigrate Rangers* because their bar is so low.

  • SSMPM says:

    You should read your article again. The part about Lennon owning them when he was manager was illuminating coming from you. Are you arite fella? Your da sounds arite and more balanced. Wisdom comes with age and experience. HH

  • Bunter says:

    The rehabilitation of Neil Lennon is underway. The 10 fiasco is now history. It hurt me and thousands of others but we move on. He is a modern Celtic legend . I would welcome him back in a coaching role in a heartbeat. But as a Celtic manager again – no – but having Lenny around the place day after day would be fantastic for our young players and our international players. Celtic, Heart, Bravery, Guts, History and Talent. That’s what Neil Lennon gives you. Time he was brought home to Paradise.

  • Shiltrum says:

    Neil Lennon deserved better than some of the Celtic Support gave him , so the other side succeeded in their mission as far as I see it. All Managers have it rough at times but you can only play the hand you have been dealt he had to try his best but others also had a hand in the running of the team time to cut him a bit of slack . He would be an asset in the dressing room .

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