The announcement of Neil Lennon as Celtic manager after a short role as caretaker, came as no major surprise to many in the football world.

Tony Mowbray’s brave, but ultimately unsuccessful tenure came to an abrupt halt after a dreadful capitulation at New St Mirren Park and a 0-4 reverse sounded alarm bells not heard at Celtic since the dark days of John Barnes. Rangers were romping to the title and things were bleak.

Lennon was given ultimate control over a freefalling Celtic side in March of 2010 and the new incumbent not only arrested the slide, but took us on a rollercoaster ride which reduced not only the points deficit over our fiercest rivals, but regained much need pride to our fans.

He finished the season unbeaten and unbowed-taking Rangers’ scalp in the process in a stirring finish at Parkhead. The championship was gone but the fight was back and there was a belief that things had turned around big style.

That feeling was only proving to be true in the Celtic camp. Elsewhere, the winds of change were not blowing so freely-especially in the media circles where vultures were circling with their vitriol and slanderous commentaries.

Lennon was not popular and they let him know it in no uncertain terms. Hated by the press, hated by Scottish football fans and hated by the the authoritarian figures governing the game up north. Nowhere to go-but up.

Up he has gone. Only two league defeats since taking over permanently and despite the downer of defeats at the hands of the Govan and Gorgie twins, Celtic are surefooted and generally confident of victory most weeks .

An astonishing 9-0 hammering of Aberdeen last week showed that confidence is on the rise at Planet Celtic. The boss has selected wisely in the transfer market, he is currently maturing and blooding youth to ally with his seasoned pro’s in an attempt to emulate the greats in the managerial world. This takes time.

Lennon got it wrong against Rangers and Hearts with his tactics and substitutions recently but let’s be frank-he is an inexperienced gaffer guiding one of the world’s leading clubs in his first attempt at a title. He is entitled to the same mistakes enjoyed by Smith of Rangers and Ferguson of Man Utd, legends who command a wealth of experience between them.

Look at their seasons so far-hardly brimming with perfection but not quite subject to the rigorous scrutiny the Lurgan Bhoy currently bows to.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Click here for Page 2

Share this article