Celtic manager Neil Lennon has labeled Leigh Griffiths “an enigma” as he talked up the partnership between himself and Odsonne Edouard.
It’s been a season of two halves for Griffiths. During the first six months of the campaign, he only managed three goals and often found himself out of the side to accommodate Odsonne Edouard.
Now, however, it’s a different story. Before the lockdown, Griffiths bagged eight goals between January and March as Lennon discovered a new 3-5-2 partnership that suited both of his top strikers (Transfermarkt).
And as he bigged up the partnership and touched on the formation, he gave Griff a rather peculiar label. Speaking in the Sunday Post, here’s what Lennon had to say:
“He (Edouard) and Leigh have done all right together. But you tend to find that clever players will be on the same wavelength. It’s something you can’t coach. They’re linking up by making split-second decisions on the pitch and that is not something I would take credit for.
“We do work on combinations but, ultimately, it’s down to them. Griffiths is a bit of an enigma but he’s a goalscorer and he’s always a threat.
“On top of that, our midfield is as good as anyone’s, with a combination of Scott Brown, Callum McGregor, Ryan Christie, Tom Rogic, Olivier Ntcham and Nir Bitton. I like the formation – I like it because it works!”
Health virus may have robbed us
The current health virus means that football likely won’t be played in Scotland for the foreseeable future. Given the whole of Britain is in lockdown, it’s looking unlikely that there will be any professional sport played for some time.
And whilst football is always secondary to health, it’s also robbed us of the chance to see this partnership between Edouard and Griffiths blossom further. It’s gone under the radar due to Griff’s form since December, but Edouard himself has managed to bag 11 goals since January (Transfermarkt). More often than not it’s come alongside Celtic’s number nine.
With vital games at Ibrox against Rangers and Aberdeen at Hampden on the horizon before the shutdown, it was looking like a blockbuster end to the campaign. At the very least, we were all interested in seeing how this partnership did against Rangers after our 2-1 reverse defeat in December.
Now, you question whether we’ll still see that come to fruition. Lennon may not even stick by the formation if we return and were to play Rangers in our next match. Given the lack of momentum, it’s difficult to predict what Lennon’s starting XI would read as.
However, it’s interesting to hear him label Griff as an enigma. It’s neither a positive nor a negative term for a player. It suggests that you don’t know what you’re going to get from him, so in a sense, the manager is probably right.
But since January, all we’ve gotten from Griffiths is goals. Here’s hoping, when the football starts up again, nothing changes in that regard.