Surprise, surprise, Neil Lennon has once again blamed fatigue for failing to win another match at Celtic.
The Northern Irishman has now failed to win four domestic games since arriving back in February. The most notable aspect of the results, however, have been the woeful performances we’ve had to endure.
One of the bargaining chips that Lennon has always had was the fact he had increased the lead at the top of the table. It was eight points when he came in, and he managed to take it to 13 after a 2-1 home win over Rangers back in March.
Nearly two months is a massively long time in football, however. Celtic are now just six points clear of their Glasgow rivals, even if the league is already won.
It may not mean much for the competition as a whole, but it’s a damning indictment of Lennon’s lack of consistency. We’ve managed a seven-point swing in Rangers’ favour over the last 43 days. If we were to start a season like that then it would almost be a disaster.
But one of the most frustrating aspects of Lennon’s post-match interviews is his constant blaming of fatigue.
He was at it once again after the Rangers game. When asked by Celtic TV whether he was surprised by the lack of tempo and momentum from Celtic, Lennon simply said that the players looked “tired” and “fatigued”.
Not for the first time
This is a record we’ve heard more than once from Lennon.
You can go all the way back to his first slip-up – a 0-0 draw at home to Aberdeen. He blamed the performance on that day to fatigue. He tried to say that the team were emotionally drained after losing Brendan Rodgers. Despite the fact it had been nearly two weeks at that point since his departure.
He then touched on fatigue kicking in after the 0-0 draw at Hibs too. And, once again, he did so against Rangers after another sloppy display.
But if fatigue was such a key factor, why were we so clinical and convincing at Pittodrie? Why did we sweep Aberdeen aside with ease in the Scottish Cup semi-final?
For the last several weeks now, Celtic have been going into matches with a full week to prepare. Don’t tell the supporters that players are too tired to play 90 minutes of football a week. That doesn’t wash.
Players should be able to get out of bed at 3am and be up for facing Rangers especially. Celtic weren’t fatigued yesterday, they were just garbage. And it all stemmed from Lennon’s pre-match decision-making.
Nothing more and nothing less.