Neil Lennon touches on Celtic's Morton debacle

By David Walton

September 24, 2019

Celtic manager Neil Lennon has revisited his Morton debacle of 2013 as he built up to tomorrow’s Betfred Cup clash against Partick Thistle.

Six years ago today, Lennon’s star-studded squad came up against Allan Moore’s Championship strugglers, who sealed their place in the League Cup quarter-finals with a 1-0 win at Parkhead.

It’s a game that ultimately haunts the Celtic fans when they think back to Lennon’s first reign. For all of the success the Hoops boss enjoyed, that night was certainly a black mark.

Neil Lennon suffered the worst managerial result of his career six years ago (Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

And he’s finally touched on that game specifically when previewing the dangers of facing Partick. Speaking to the BBC, this is what Neil had to say:

“The Morton one is a reminder to us these things can happen. It was one of those games – we had 30-odd attempts at goal and Morton scored a penalty. We could have played for days and probably not scored.

“So we need to take the luck element away – the bad luck of the cup – and play strongly. We want to keep our form and momentum going.

“Ian is a very good, experienced manager and did a fantastic job at Ayr. With Alan Archibald back as his number two, it’s a very potent combination.”

Celtic weren’t in the form they are now when they faced Morton

Back in 2013, Scottish football was still getting used to a Rangers-less top flight. It was only the Ibrox club’s second season outside of the Premiership, and Celtic were cruising.

Granted, that’s hardly changed since they came back, but the Hoops certainly seemed to struggle with motivation when they had nobody seriously pushing them for the league title.

Lennon cruised to three titles in-a-row in his first spell (Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

Celtic did go into the Morton clash undefeated in domestic football, but they weren’t playing to the same level they are now. The Hoops side that night contained Liverpool superstar Virgil Van Dijk. Football can certainly be an odd game, with the big centre-back ending the night as a centre-forward against Morton.

When Partick come to town tomorrow, Celtic will go into it in some fine form. They’ve scored in every single game they’ve played this season, both domestically and in Europe.

Lennon is looking to secure Celtic’s 10th consecutive domestic trophy (Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Thistle will do well to end that run, especially since they come into the match at the foot of the Championship table.

Lennon knows exactly what to expect tomorrow night, and he’ll be more than aware of the dangers. Taking all of that into account, it would be the shock of the season if Celtic didn’t overcome the Jags.