'Half-hearted' Celtic anger Lennon

Published Thursday, 12 December 2013
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Lurgan-born Celtic boss Neil Lennon has spoken of his anger and disappointment after his side slumped to their heaviest European defeat since 2005, ending their Champions League campaign.

'Half-hearted' Celtic anger Lennon
Neymar celebrates as another Barca goal adds to Celtic's woes. (© Getty)

The Hoops took on Barcelona at the Nou Camp on Wednesday night, but a lacklustre performance left Lennon facing a 6-1 score which included a hat-trick fired past his team by Brazil star Neymar.

It left Celtic bottom of Group H with just three points from six games.

"Barcelona were fantastic, as we expected them to be, but we were very poor," Lennon said.

"I wouldn't say some players gave up, but it certainly looked that way at times.

"I would never accuse a player of doing that, but a lot of half-hearted performances and as a manager, that was the most disappointing aspect of the whole game."

It was unacceptable from some of the players - nowhere near the performances against Barcelona recently so that was very disappointing, obviously.

Neil Lennon

Lennon added: "There was no bravery on the ball tonight, we started off nervously and it looked like our heads went down at 2-0.

"We were weak and that has not been like us - that is something I have to address going forward."

It took just seven minutes for Barca to open their account, courtesy of defender Gerard Pique.

Pedro Rodriguez and Neymar added two more goals before the break, with Neymar's second coming just two minutes after the interval.

Substitute Cristian Tello added the sixth just after 70 minutes gone.

It fell to Georgios Samaras to grab a late goal that was little consolation for Celtic.

Barca boss Gerardo Martino was understandably delighted with the result.

"Our play is improving all the time and I expect better by the end of the year. There is always room for improvement and that is what we are striving for," he said.

"Hopefully this is the breakthrough moment this season."

© UTV News
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13 Comments
davy in belfast wrote (124 days ago):
All this talk about Rangers not being in the league, or Europe. Have to say that after watching all the Celtic European gammes this year, they are a bad lot. I think that Rangers would wipe the floor with them, even with the team they have in a lower division. Celtic are cringeworthy to watch in Europe. Men against boys.
Iain in Belfast wrote (124 days ago):
Ryan, hardest group? Didn't see Arsenal's group by any chance? AC Milan and Ajax are pale comparisons to what they used to be. Keep grasping at straws guys. It says a lot about the defensive attitude of Celtic fans in general, so if you slag them off you must be a Rangers fan? Hammered on the pitch for being crap, hammered off the pitch for being bigots.
Larry in Belfast wrote (125 days ago):
When are Celtic going to realise they need Rangers, and Rangers need Celtic, to keep up the standard of Scottish football. They majority of teams are no better than the Irish league and it is no wonder that when Celtic play 'big' teams they get hammered. Come on Scotland, loose your bigotry and help each other get better, or else Scottish football will loose any impact in europe.
Ryan in An Dun wrote (125 days ago):
Great to see Rangers fans watching the Celtic game to come to the conclusion that they are rubbish. They where in the hardest group after all. Way harder than Rangers. Oh or was it the Europa League they where in. Oh sorry no it was Scottish league 2 or something like that. Suppose there is a bit of a difference between playing the likes of Barcalona, AC Millan and Ajax compared to Ayr, East Fife and Brechin.
Ady in Try one wrote (126 days ago):
@ Iain ... Aren't that new team " Therangers" not allowed to play in Europe as they have no previous history in competetion and have a reputation for non-payment of debts ?
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