Neil Lennon admits he is missing the fans after Celtic’s win over St Mirren



Posted Thursday, September 17, 2020 by PA

Neil Lennon admits he is missing the fans after Celtic’s win over St Mirren

Neil Lennon admitted the absence of fans was getting to him after Celtic came from behind to beat St Mirren 2-1 in Paisley.

In another match played behind closed doors due to the coronavirus crisis, Saints striker Lee Erwin bundled in a shock opener in the third minute only to see it cancelled out by Hoops defender Shane Duffy.

James Forrest used his head in the 36th minute to give the champions the interval lead before St Mirren’s emergency loan keeper Zdenek Zlamal saved an Odsonne Edouard penalty in the 75th minute as the visitors moved into second place in the Premiership, three points behind Rangers with a game in hand.

Afterwards boss Lennon spoke out about the lack of atmosphere.

He said: “It’s difficult because there are no supporters. I think it’s really difficult for them, especially at a big club like ours.

“You get a head of steam up in a game and normally you get the atmosphere crackling.

“It gives the players a lift and there is none of that at the minute. If the goalkeeper makes a great save, the crowd get up.

“You win a corner and it’s an important facet of the game. We are missing all that at the minute.

“So there is a bit of adaptation, no question subconsciously that is a big miss for them.

“It’s not an excuse like, but even for me winning 5-0 at the weekend (against Ross County) – there is not a big crowd there to enjoy it and enjoy the atmosphere.

“Even tonight would have been great. Tannadice would have been great. We are adapting as best we can and as well as anyone.”

After being on the end of decisions that he claimed went against his side in the 3-0 defeat by Hibernian at the weekend, St Mirren boss Jim Goodwin thought his team should have had a penalty in the first half.

He said: “People will be sick and tired of my whining voice but I am disappointed that we didn’t get a penalty in the first half.

“I’m not for one minute suggesting that Shane Duffy deliberately handled the ball but he definitely did handball it.

“He lost the flight of the ball, it hit his left arm, and in doing so it actually stopped the ball going through to Richard Tait.

“We would have had an opportunity to put the ball in the back of the net, a difficult one at that but it still would have been a good chance.

“So we’re not getting the rub of the green at the moment. People tell me these decisions even themselves. I’ll (not) hold my breath on that one but you know that’s another one that went against us.

“Similar to the one on Saturday, at two nil, a stonewall penalty denied when (Ryan) Porteous almost catches the ball and then Martin Boyle punches the ball into the back of the net for the third.

“So I think maybe the conversation we should all be having is where are you going to find the money to get VAR.”

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