Skip to main content

James Forrest feels Celtic have shown great character since Brendan Rodgers’ departure

James Forrest believes Celtic players have “really shown the character” in the wake of Brendan Rodgers’ shock departure to Leicester.

The Northern Irishman stunned Hoops players and supporters with his move down south last week with the Parkhead club on the cusp of an eighth successive Ladbrokes Premiership title win and an unprecedented domestic treble treble.

Former Celtic manager and captain Neil Lennon was put in charge until the end of the season and began his second tenure with a last-gasp 2-1 win over Hearts at Tynecastle on Wednesday night which kept the Hoops eight points clear of Rangers at the top of the league.

And when Lennon returned to his former club Hibernian in the William Hill Scottish Cup quarter-final at Easter Road on Saturday, it was Forrest who fired the visitors ahead in the second half with a stunning strike before skipper Scott Brown added a second to take the holders into Monday night’s semi-final draw.

“It was a massive win for us given everything that’s happened in the last few days,” Forrest told CelticTV.

“It’s the quarter-final of the cup so we wanted to make sure we got to Hampden and we did that with a really strong performance.

“We played well throughout but I felt as the game went on we got stronger.

“For my goal, the ball sat up nicely for me and I struck it well so I’m delighted to see it hit the back of the net and we really kicked on after we got that first goal.

“I feel that the last couple of days we’ve really shown the character in the squad with both the performances and the victories.”

Forrest was given his debut by Lennon in his first spell at the club and the 27-year-old Scotland winger knows what will be expected in the run-in.

He said: “Quite a few of the boys have worked under him before and know what he’ll ask for from us.

“Even the players who haven’t worked under him have come up against his teams and know the attacking football he likes to play and how hard his teams can be to play against.

“Everything happens so quickly in football but credit to the club, they got in a manager who has been here before and knows what it’s like.

“For that to happen so quickly, in a week where we had two really big games, has really settled the players and there’s a really positive mood in the changing room now.”

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1