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Neil Lennon disappointed with Celtic coronavirus charge

Kilmarnock v Celtic – Scottish Premiership – Rugby Park
(Image credit: Ian McNichol)

Celtic boss Neil Lennon has expressed disappointment at the Parkhead club being charged after Boli Bolingoli breached Covid-19 protocols.

Celtic face disciplinary proceedings at the hands of the Scottish Professional Football League after the Hoops defender played against Kilmarnock despite not quarantining after a secret trip to Spain.

Bolingoli will also face disciplinary procedures by the Scottish Football Association, while Aberdeen and eight of their players will also face charges for breaching guidelines.

Asked how he felt about the club being charged for Bolingoli’s transgression,  Lennon said: “Disappointed for the club. I think we have been at the forefront of getting the game up and running.

“All the procedures, all the protocols, and it is down to the actions of one individual really.

“But we will hold our hands up, if we are accountable, we will have to accept that, take it and move on.

“What we don’t want is the game to shut down again or any sort of mishaps, if you want to call it that.

“Two clubs, Aberdeen and ourselves, embroiled in this.

“I think it is unfortunate from my point of view as a manager, the majority of the players here and the staff and people at the club have worked really hard, tirelessly, so we will try to set the highest standards we can.”

On the future of Bolingoli, the Parkhead boss stated that there had been “no conclusion as of yet but there will be”.

Celtic have had two matches postponed as a result of the Belgian’s actions and they return to action in Glasgow on Tuesday in a one-legged Champions League first qualifier against Icelandic outfit KR Reykjavik.

The former Hoops captain stressed that reaching the Champions League was one of the club’s priorities this season.

“I think the players will be fully focused on that,” he said. “It is important for them, important for the club.

“We’ve only had two competitive games so I think this game is really important for a lot of reasons.

“Reykjavik played on Friday and before that they had a shutdown but, for me, the game is all about us.

“We are at home, it is one leg. The preparation has been good even though we missed out on a couple of games.

“We have given plenty of respect to Reykjavik but we are expecting a strong performance from ourselves.”

Striker Leigh Griffiths remains out with a calf injury, winger Mikey Johnston has had his calf surgery and will be out for three to five weeks, while striker Albian Ajeti, the new signing from West Ham, is in squad but not ready to start.