Lennon warns players following stalemate with Hibernian
Neil Lennon told his Celtic players that they are not yet on holiday after drawing a blank in the 0-0 draw against Hibernian at Easter Road.
The Ladbrokes Premiership leaders moved nine points ahead of Rangers with four games remaining, the first of which is at home to Kilmarnock next week.
The former Celtic skipper, put in charge until the end of the season in February after the sudden departure of Brendan Rodgers to Leicester, has yet to lose in nine games and guided the club to the William Hill Scottish Cup final last week with a 3-0 win over Aberdeen.
However, after a goalless draw against Livingston in the previous league game, he was far from pleased with what he witnessed in Leith.
“It was very frustrating, from quality players all over the board,” said Lennon, who revealed left-back Kieran Tierney could be out for the rest of the season with an ongoing hip and pelvis problem which requires a trip to see a specialist.
“I don’t know if there is anxiety there but there shouldn’t be. We need to approach the start of games as well as we did last week but we didn’t today and allowed Hibs to get a foothold.
“If you are going for the title – the holidays aren’t here yet. Forget about the noise out there. ‘You can win it here, you can win it there’, you have to win the game and that’s what’s angering me because we are up and down at the minute.
“The attitude of some of the players is not making me happy but I have told them what I expect from here on in. We looked lackadaisical, lacked physicality at times, energy and quality.
“I am not getting panicky or anxious about anything. We are dictating our own destiny here and we have to dictate it a bit better than we did in the last two league games.
“That’s it. We are not there yet. I believe we will eventually get there but we have to approach the games and start the games better.”
On Tierney, the Northern Irishman said: “He is seeing a specialist on Thursday. He is in too much discomfort to play. We will have to go with what we are advised by the specialist.
“He has played for quite a while but he has got to the point where he is in too much pain.”
It was another fine result for Paul Heckingbottom who replaced Lennon at Hibs in February and who has yet to lose in nine league games, although Celtic knocked them out of the William Hill Scottish Cup last month.
Hibs keeper Ofir Marciano made several key saves during an open game but it was far from one-sided.
Heckingbottom said: “In all honesty, disappointed that we didn’t win because you are greedy but really pleased with long parts of the game which is what we are about and how we want to play.
“So delighted for the players, proud of them.”