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Lennon hits out: ‘You call it sectarianism here in Scotland, I call it racism’

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Neil Lennon has called out the anti-Irish racism that is prominent in Scottish football and society as a whole.

For 18 years he has heard various excuses trotted out to explain and excuse the abuse that he suffers on a daily basis.

His competitive nature as a player was a popular cover for the abuse he received while some even suggested that his ‘cocky stance’ made him a target.

Yesterday his agent Martin Reilly went on radio and television to call out an uncomfortable truth that Scotland would rather not discuss.

The bulk of the abuse that Lennon takes is because he is an Irish Catholic. Many people in Scotland can’t live with his obvious success.

Everyone tries to skirt round it, that’s the basis of it, has been since 2000,” The Scotsman reports the Hibs manager saying.

The first day I stepped on to the pitch at Windsor Park as a Celtic player I was booed every time I touched the ball, having previously played 36 times and had nothing.

But it was my association with Celtic, being high profile – there’s no question in my mind that was the reason behind it.

You call it sectarianism here in Scotland, I call it racism. If a black man is abused, you are not just abusing the colour of his skin, you are abusing his culture, his heritage, his background.

It’s the exact same when I get called a F**ian, a pauper, a beggar, a ta**ier.

These people with the sense of entitlement or superiority complex. And all I do is stand up for myself.”

The SFA or SPFL have never commented on the racism that Lennon has been subjected to during his time in Scottish football.

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