Former Rangers midfielder Charlie Adam insists that Neil Lennon is the right man for the Celtic job.
Adam was speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live (19/05, 2:40pm). He believes that Celtic fans have been narrow-minded in their treatment of Brendan Rodgers too.
Lennon has been in the job since Rodgers walked out in late-February. Since then, he’s won nine out of 13 games, won the Premiership, and guided Celtic to the Scottish Cup final on Saturday against Hearts. Victory there and he’ll have done the job he set out to do.
Despite that, however, performances have been poor. Celtic haven’t been convincing against Rangers in particular, despite winning one of two meetings under Lennon. And it was no surprise then to hear Adam big Lennon up for the job. Speaking to 5Live Sport (19/05, 2:40pm), this is what the ex-Rangers man had to say.
“I back Neil Lennon on this because he’s been told to do a job. Brendan left in circumstances that he wanted to go to Leicester which was very hurtful to a lot of supporters, but they were narrow-minded supporters.
“For Lennon, he is the obvious candidate. He’s been told to take over the reins. He’s done that. Okay, he’s been beaten by Rangers, but that would be one of the issues with the younger supporters.
“I don’t think any fan would complain about Lennon walking into the job in the summer. The job Lennon has done justified him getting the job.”
It all depends on how black and white you see things
Being narrow-minded, as Adam likes to put it, would be picking Lennon just because he won the title. It’s important not to forget that Celtic were eight points clear when he arrived. In the space of three months, Lennon has only managed to increase that by a point, and it took until the final day of the season to do it.
Sure, the Northern Irishman could win the Scottish Cup. He deserves credit for that if he wins it, because it’s certainly his trophy considering he would’ve guided us past Hibernian, Aberdeen, and Hearts respectively.
But in the bigger picture, the football has been poor. Last-minute goals against Dundee, Hearts, and Rangers genuinely stopped this being a real title race. The rebuttal to that, of course, is the idea that the problems were there in the football when Lennon came in.
Well, not really. Celtic were on a fine nine-game winning run domestically before Lennon arrived. This included four and five goal margins over Premiership opposition. The team had also conceded just one goal in nine games, and had scored 26. The football wasn’t as bad as some may like to think it was in order to defend Lennon.
It’s no surprise Rangers-minded people like Adam want Lennon to get the job. It stops Celtic from being seriously ambitious. But the truth is, we need something fresh. Lenny, at the end of the day, doesn’t provide that in my view.
He deserves his time in the spotlight as well as the gratitude of leading us out of the darkness and to eight-in-a-row. But we’ve tripped and crawled along the way. Time for something different.