Monday 17 December 2018

Lennon has no concerns over Ibrox celebrations

Hibs boss Neil Lennon. Photo: Getty
Hibs boss Neil Lennon. Photo: Getty

Neil Lennon insists he has no concerns about his goal celebrations following Hibernian's leveller in the 3-2 Ladbrokes Premiership win over Rangers at Ibrox.

The Northern Irishman was back at the ground for the first time since 2012 when, as Celtic manager, he watched from the media room having been banned from the dugout for the second half by referee Calum Murray.

When striker Simon Murray cancelled out an early opener from Gers striker Alfredo Morelos in the 20th minute, the Hibs boss turned to the main stand, cupped his ears made and made a gesture.

In a feisty game Rangers midfielder Ryan Jack was shown a straight red card by referee John Beaton in the 35th minute following a melee and then Hibs took the lead soon after with a James Tavernier own goal.

Midfielder Vykintas Slivka drove in a third in the 65th minute before Tavernier reduced the deficit with a header.

When it was suggested that Rangers assistant manager Helder Baptista had spoken to the police about Lennon, he replied: "He should have got back in his box.

"Funny enough he didn't (have something to say to me). I don't know what he was saying, I assume he was unhappy about something. I didn't make a gesture, I celebrated a goal.

"If they are unhappy about it they can come and tell me.

"But I shouldn't get into trouble for doing that.

"I am celebrating a goal. What way are you supposed to celebrate a goal?"

Lennon was pleased by the way his side responded to going down to an early goal

He said: "I am thrilled by the win and the character and quality of the team. I didn't see the sending off but John must have seen something.

"Some players lose their discipline, it can happen here and we took full advantage of it.

"We were superb in the second half, my only criticism is that we didn't put Rangers away more comfortably."

Jack's red card was the subject of some confusion although at one point in the multi-player chaos which followed when Slivka fouled Gers midfielder Graham Dorrans, it appeared as though Hibs' Irish striker Anthony Stokes had grabbed him before putting his head towards him.

It appeared that the Portuguese coach was referring to Stokes when he said: "If someone in rugby does that in five minutes and one goal up, he needs to be sent off."

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