Celtic boss Neil Lennon has disclosed that he had no doubt that Olivier Ntcham would take the chance that was presented to him in the last minute of Celtic’s match against Lazio.
With the game deep into injury time, Ntcham took Odsonne Edouard’s pass and dinked it into the back of the net to secure a 2-1 win for Celtic, their first ever win in Italy.
Speaking to Celtic’s YouTube channel after the game, Lennon revealed that he had faith in the player’s ability to take the opportunity.
“He was fresh”
“I knew he would score” the Hoops manager said. “I really fancied him. He was fresh, I just fancied Olly. I knew he would dink it.”
Ntcham has plenty of qualities as a player, but he surely must have felt some pressure as he received the pass from Ntcham.
However, his finish was very coolly done, as he gave Lazio goalkeeper Thomas Strakosha no chance. The goal must give Edouard plenty of confidence going forward for the rest of the season.
Goal shows that player is dependable
He has not been a first-team regular for the Hoops this season. However, that goal shows that he can be relied on when called upon by Neil Lennon.
It is also a good sign for the player that Lennon was so effusive in his praise of Ntcham following the goal. It will be interesting to see if Ntcham gets a more regular run of games in the first-team following his memorable moment.
Even if he doesn’t, he will go down in Celtic history as the man who scored the winning goal in Celtic’s first ever win in Italy.