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Neil Lennon breaks his silence on Devante Cole’s attack on Ismaila Soro

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has finally spoken out about brutal attack on Ismaila Soro that escaped retrospective punishment from the SFA while they poured over an unproven claim of diving from Albian Ajeti.

In the closing minutes of Celtic’ 2-1 win over Motherwell the Fir Park man was falling to the ground when he raised his right leg and deliberately back-heeled the Celtic substitute in the stomach.

The incident took place virtually in front of the assistant referee with having a clear view before showing a yellow card.

Having Motherwell reduced to 10 men for a minute or two wouldn’t have given Celtic much of an advantage but it would provide some protection to players from over the ball attacks.

The converse of that is now true- players like Cole know that they can kick out at an opponents in the stomach without the risk of a red card from the referee or SFA Compliance Officer. Below is the incident that the British Broadcasting Corporation decided not to include in their highlights package.

Be interested to see the media attention this brings.

Celtic player kicks out like that, certain quarters would want jailed! pic.twitter.com/HwTYQ4DvJW

— COYBIG (@C_O_Y_B_I_G) February 6, 2021

Speaking to the Daily Record after Ajeti’ suspension was declared Not Proven, Lennon said:

Ajeti’ compared to Cole’s is night and day. Listen, the last thing I look for is for players to be sent off and I’m not convinced it was serious foul play either but compared to what Ajeti’s done, why it’s not being looked at is beyond me even though I can understand where Motherwell are coming from on that as well.

This one in particular is a strange one for me. We are sort of re-refereeing games now which, in essence, is the right thing to do. If there’ been some sort of foul play that the referee has missed then, yes, I think they should be punished or looked at.

Lennon has been strangely mute on opponents attacking Celtic players this season, in November Cole sank his studs into the thigh of Jeremie Frimpong with Andrew Dallas deciding it was only a yellow card.

In September watched Craig Sibbald run towards Ryan Christie and take a full swing at the midfielder, connect across the midfielder’ knee and walk away with a yellow card.

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