Andy Walker blasts back at Celtic manager Neil Lennon, who refuses to speak to Sky
Safe to say Celtic boss Neil Lennon and Andy Walker won’t be meeting for a pint any time soon.
The Celtic manager’s Monday night rant made plenty of headlines. Sky pundit and former Celtic striker Andy Walker was a target of ire from the Bhoys gaffer, who said Walker was “totally out of order” (Sun).
Lennon had demanded an apology from Walker, who had claimed that Celtic’s Dubai trip was a “jolly”. This accusation led to a fiery response from Neil Lennon. Additionally, Lennon refused to speak to Sky before kick-off, with Mohammed Elyounoussi fielding questions in his stead.
Walker told Sky Sports:
“Let’s stick to the facts. Celtic went on an ill-fated trip to Dubai, something that they apologised for. The up-shot of that was that they dropped 4 points against Hibs and Livingston with a weakened. All of that, self-inflicted.
“There’s been a remarkable analysis of my use of the word “jolly”. I played under Billy McNeill and Tommy Burns. We went on a mid-season jolly. The purpose of it being exactly what Celtic tried to get a couple of weeks ago; warm weather training, no pressure, no games. A bit of downtime, have a beer by all means.
“At the bottom of it, absolutely you work hard. So if anyone wants to regard that as a stag do, or some sort of Club 18-30, that’s entirely up to them”.
Andy Walker responds to Celtic manager Neil Lennon
Walker, who had two spells at Celtic Park as a player, continued:
“I’ve got to tell you, my time at Celtic was the best of my career. I feel incredibly privileged to have played for that club. I was lucky enough to play alongside some of my heroes. So I think I know what’s required, about a season that you get the Quadruple Treble, the Invincibles.
“We’re in the here and now. Celtic have got a forlorn title hope, and they’ve got a tough game tonight against Livingston.
“Preparations have been far from ideal and they’re up against the form side in the country. I think Celtic… nothing else than 3 points will do for their supporters tonight.”
Pundit wars not ending any time soon
You get the sense that Lennon’s beef with Sky will continue. He wants an apology from the broadcaster and from Andy Walker, but it doesn’t look like ever happening.
Lennon has backed himself into a corner with his continuously outlandish statements. Perhaps he’s creating a siege mentality to galvanise the dressing room. Or, he’s just tremendously angry at how the press have covered Celtic’s regrettable trip to the UAE.
Either way, this will rumble on for the foreseeable.