Lennon wants more respect for his impact on Celtic

By David Walton

November 29, 2020

Neil Lennon has launched a big defence of his effect on Celtic as he stated that he wants more respect from outside parties.

Lennon has now officially worked for the club in four different roles over a two-decade period, and has been part of many incredible successes. As a player, Neil took home five Premiership titles, four Scottish Cups, and two League Cups.

He then helped Celtic to the title as a first-team coach under Gordon Strachan, before Tony Mowbray bumped him down to reserve team manager after his arrival. Lennon would eventually take over as boss, and has led the Hoops to five more Premiership titles, three extra Scottish Cups, and another League Cup over two separate spells. Not to mention two automatic qualifications for the Champions League and one run to the last-16.

And the manager seems to think that’s overlooked by his doubters, as he looked to remind everyone of how good he’s been for Celtic.

As quoted by the Glasgow Times, Lennon said: “I’ve no reason to believe we won’t go on a run.

“In the 20 years I’ve been here I’ve made a positive impact on the club whether that’s as a player or a manager. The group want success for the fans, for themselves and for me. We’re absolutely united.

“Nothing shocks me, nothing surprises you at times in football. I don’t expect to be cut any slack from anybody, I don’t ask for it. I little bit more respect wouldn’t go amiss, but that’s on other people, that’s not on me. I act in a professional, dignified manner, whether we win or lose. I don’t expect to be given any plaudits, if and when we turn it around.”

Achievements can’t be forgotten, but also can’t be used to excuse the present

We all want Neil Lennon to achieve big success here. It’s all we’ve ever wanted since he got the job the second time around back in February 2019 – regardless of whether you wanted him to get the gig or not.

And he’s quite right in that he deserves some more respect than he’s been getting from external parties. Personal insults, for example, just aren’t on. When you read out his success stories at Parkhead, it’s easy to take everything he’s done for the club for granted. Yes, Celtic has been just as good for Lennon as he has been for the club, but he’s done his best to repay it back.

None of that can be denied. But where Neil goes wrong is that he’s using his past to try and defend the present, and the present has been nowhere near good enough.

Celtic manager Neil Lennon / (Photo by Craig Foy/SNS Group via Getty Images)

If there was enough evidence in the here and now to defend himself with, the manager would be using it. It’s telling that he has to talk about his impact as a whole on the club to justify why things can change for the better in the immediate future. There’s not enough there to suggest that’s going to happen.

It’s a difficult balance to strike for supporters. Trying to find a way to criticise the current performances of both the team and the manager without seeming to go overboard. There’s a line that fans undoubtedly try not to cross when having a go at the manager, and it’s unfair to accuse fans who want a better Celtic of disrespecting the manager.

By all means, respect/acknowledge/admire the history of Neil Lennon as a Celtic employee. But that won’t ever change the fact that he isn’t managing to succeed in the present.

In other news, this Celtic star is reportedly part of a three-way decision being pondered by a European heavyweight