Chris Sutton makes interesting behind-the-scenes Celtic claim

By David Walton

February 24, 2021

Chris Sutton has made an interesting claim regarding the Celtic board and Neil Lennon.

Lennon officially left the club this morning in a statement released in the early morning. It comes with the club having produced a disastrous fight for 10-in-a-row. In embarrassing fashion, Lennon and his Celtic players have failed to put up any sort of fight to rivals Rangers.

However, there have been question marks over how hands-on Lennon actually was with the major decisions that were being made. This stretched from what say Lennon had in his backroom team as well as the signings made by the club.

And Sutton believes Lennon may very well have been handicapped when he looks back at some of the recent decisions made at the club.

Speaking in his column via the Daily Record, Sutton said: “Many of the players are the same ones with which he managed to win nine and they have killed him this season. The recruitment team have also killed him. Some of the signings have been nowhere near it. Vasilis Barkas. Albian Ajeti. £10 million on two guys who can’t get into the team.

“I wondered for long spells how much of that was down to him. I never felt he was able to get his own people into the building after he returned when Brendan Rodgers quit. It was almost like he’d come back with orders not to be himself. And not to have his own people.

“Where were the Johan Mjalllbys or Garry Parkers to tell him what was what? Who was signing the players for him? It was a job impossible to turn down, yet from the outside it looked like a club dictating to a boss from the outset as opposed to the other way around.”

All we can do is speculate; but Chris Sutton makes an interesting Celtic claim

We’ll never know for certain just how little or big an influence Lennon had behind the scenes. Not until the former Celtic boss comes out with a book! (What a read that will be by the way).

However, there are signs there that Lennon wasn’t getting the scope to make his own decisions. Firstly, you had Tommy Johnson coming out last week and claiming his return to Celtic was blocked [Celtic Huddle Podcast]. That was despite the fact Lennon wanted him in the door as part of his backroom team.

You then had the signing of Liam Shaw on a pre-contract. It’s difficult to believe that this is one of Lennon’s. Not when you take into consideration the fact that it happened only two weeks before his own departure.

Celtic signed Liam Shaw only weeks before Lennon departure / (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)

Surely, the board wasn’t allowing a manager who was one game from the sack the opportunity to sign players?

As supporters, that’s all we can really latch on to for our evidence. Any signs the club has dropped that appear to link Lennon to not having a tremendous deal of power.

It was the same with Brendan Rodgers too. The failure to sign John McGinn irked him, whilst he clearly didn’t overly rate Marian Shved either [The Scotsman]. Other managers have clearly had decisions made for them too, so Lennon would hardly be a lone wolf in that regard.

In other news, two key figures have broken their media silence.