Neil Lennon shoots down goal difference question

By Hamish Carton

December 3, 2019

Neil Lennon says he’s “not even thinking about goal difference” as he batted away another intrusive press question on Tuesday afternoon.

The Northern Irishman was meeting the media to preview tomorrow night’s game against Hamilton Accies. One reporter asked the boss whether he saw the game as an opportunity for the team to add to their already impressive goal tally.

But Lennon shot that down, insisting he’d take any sort of win against Brian Rice’s side.

(Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

“You’re taking that for granted, in terms of racking up the goals,” he said, as shown on the official Celtic YouTube channel. “I don’t take that for granted at all.

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“I’m not even thinking about goal difference. We’re only 15 games into the season and there’s another 20+ to go. It may come into my thinking if the situation is the same come March or April time.

“But in terms of tomorrow it’s about winning the game. If we win it well, great. If we scrape it, great. But it’s important we try and keep a level of performance going.”

(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Lennon knows that goal difference talk is premature

Lennon’s judgement on the importance of goal difference is pretty sound. The Scottish league title has only been decided on goals once since the invention of three points for a win.

That came in the infamous 2002/03 season as we missed out on glory despite being the major story that season. Lennon was part of that side and will understand the pain as a result, but he’ll also realise that the chances of Celtic having to rely on goal difference are very slim.

(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Our gap of title triumph has been nine points in each of our last two seasons. And that’s with us taking our foot of the gas in our final matches. Every other of our six successive title triumph have been won by a greater margin, so it’s hard to imagine us being pushed right to the wire this time.

If it gets to the nitty gritty and we’re still in a title race then maybe we should all become a bit more concerned about it. But for now there is even a debate over whether Rangers are credible title challenges. If they stumble, like many expect, in their challenging December month then the current goal difference chat could all become a little comical.

The boss knows that as much as the rest of us do.