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Page last updated at 10:48 GMT, Sunday, 13 June 2010 11:48 UK

Celtic manager Neil Lennon urges referee pressure

Celtic manager Neil Lennon
Lennon wants his Celtic players to question officials next season

Neil Lennon want his Celtic players to question referees after restating his belief that they were hard done by in Old Firm games last season.

The 38-year-old, who was installed as the club's new manager last week, said some of the decisions were "abysmal".

"In the high-profile games, the Rangers games in particular. The club were justified in making a point about it," added Lennon.

"I want to see them (the players)sticking up for each other."

Rangers secured their second successive Scottish Premier League title last season, with Celtic parting company with manager Tony Mowbray before the end of the campaign.

I did it myself as a player, not to influence the ref but to let him know we weren't happy

Celtic manager Neil Lennon

Lennon, who steered the club to eight consecutive league wins before landing the job, believes Celtic failed to get the rub of the green at crucial times.

Marc-Antoine Fortune had a goal chalked off in the Old Firm derby draw in January, and Celtic were unhappy with a number of decisions in both of their derby defeats at Ibrox.

Midfielder Scott Brown was sent off after a clash with Kyle Lafferty in February and the visitors were unsuccessful with a couple of penalty claims in the October meeting.

Celtic were also unsuccessful with an appeal against Brown's dismissal.


"I think some of the decisions we had last season were abysmal," said Celtic.

On his desire to see his players question decisions and support each other on the pitch, said: "I did it myself as a player, not to influence the ref but to let him know we weren't happy.

"Any challenges that were a wee bit heavy, there were two or three of us around the player who did it.

"There was a togetherness and I want to see that again. I want to see them sticking up for each other.

"They did that in the last few games. That's what teams are about - looking after each other on the pitch and having a good spirit off it."

The Celtic manager added: "It's important; it's a basic thing in the game and it's difficult because in the modern game you've got all these different coaches. But we'll try to develop the players and make sure there's an affinity with the club."

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see also
Neil Lennon's Celtic story
09 Jun 10 |  Scotland
Celtic fume at lost Brown appeal
04 Mar 10 |  Celtic

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