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  • Neil Lennon: Performance not up to our usual standards

    Neil Lennon: Performance not up to our usual standards

    By: Tony Connelly on 06 Oct, 2019 15:04

  • NEIL Lennon said a combination of poor decision-making and going a man down was behind Celtic’s 2-0 defeat to Livingston, adding that he had expected more from his side.

    Celtic arrived at the Tony Macaroni Stadium less than 72 hours on from their 2-0 win over Cluj in the Europa League, but the Hoops failed to replicate their impressive performance from midweek as they fell to a 2-0 defeat to Livingston.

    The home side were given an advantage midway through the first half when Ryan Christie was sent off for a mis-timed challenge on Scott Robinson.

    Neil Lennon said he was reasonably pleased with how his side had started the game but conceded that the sending off and defensive errors proved decisive.

    “It’s a poor result," he said. "I thought we started the game okay. We were quite bright, had good tempo and were intense. We lost Ryan very early and had to readjust. We were okay going into half-time and I thought we could go on and win it.

    “It was really passive from us for the first goal. We were trying to force the issue with 10 men and were putting a certain amount of pressure on the goal without really working the goalkeeper enough.

    “Our decision-making at times wasn’t great and then the second goal was really poor from our point of view, we should be dealing with that.

    “For the first goal it was too easy for us to get turned and play a through ball. We should have been up on that and make him go back the way. That’s a facet of our play that we work on and are quite aggressive around our own box so that was disappointing.

    “We tried to force the issue, had good pressure and I felt we would eventually get one. The second goal put a huge dent in that and it was a poor goal. It was a straight ball over the top between the two centre-halves. It was a great finish but Dykes should never get in that position.”

    The Celtic manager said he anticipated a difficult afternoon coming into the game but added he expected more from his players.

    “We put a lot into Thursday and then we had to play a long time with 10 men as well so that might have come into it,” said the Irishman. “I was hoping for a bit of a reaction from the subs as well but they didn’t really affect the game as well as we would have liked.

    “I thought we started well, looked lively and had a couple of chances early on. We had decent control of the game up until the red card.”

    “I’m expecting better. I said to them before the game that this game was a concern. It’s a dangerous opponent and dangerous environment with an opponent who would be up for it so we had to match that.”


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