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Neil Lennon insists recent achievements of Celtic players should not be ignored

Neil Lennon File Photo
(Image credit: Jane Barlow)

Neil Lennon sent out a reminder of Celtic’s recent achievements ahead of the rearranged William Hill Scottish Cup semi-final against Aberdeen on Sunday.

The Hoops’ creditable 2-2 Europa League draw against Lille in France on Thursday night tempered the criticism aimed at the Parkhead outfit over the previous three games.

The champions had lost to Old Firm rivals Rangers and AC Milan and then drew 3-3 with the Dons in the Premiership at Pittodrie last Sunday which brought a level of criticism which stung the Hoops boss.

However, Celtic, in a competition held over from last season due to the impact of the coronavirus crisis, are looking to win their quadruple domestic treble with the knowledge that they have won the last 11 trophies available in Scotland and as they chase their 10th successive league title.

“It is weird having to play a competition from last season but we are looking forward to it,” said the Parkhead boss ahead of the Hampden Park tie.

“It is testament to the players’ consistency that we are in another semi-final and we have earned the right to be in the semi-final.

“No other club has done what these players have done in the past three or four years and that shouldn’t be ignored.

“It was a stellar season last season. We won 26 out of 30 league games.

“We were banging in goals left, right and centre, keeping clean sheets.

“We know the opposition because we just had a good look at them at the weekend. It is a game we are very much looking forward to.”

The Celtic manager was buoyed by his side’s performance against big-money Lille despite losing a two-goal interval lead to leave the Parkhead club with one point from six ahead of a double-header against Sparta Prague in November.

However, Lennon is still sweating on the fitness of defender Kristoffer Ajer who sustained a groin injury early in the second half in France.

Israel defender Hatem Abd Elhamed is back in contention after he finished his self-isolation after contracting Covid-19 while on international duty.