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NO MORE Mr NICE GUY

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NEIL LENNON accepts his head “is on the chopping block” as he prepares for an attitude change towards his under-performing players.

The Celtic boss acknowledges he will have to get tough with a squad that has won only one game in their last six outings and have conceded a disastrous 14 goals in the process.

The last straw was the catastrophic performance in the appalling 4-1 loss to Sparta Prague in the Europa League Group H encounter at Parkhead on Thursday night.

The Irishman is well aware that there can be no more ‘Mr Nice Guy’ approach if he is to dramatically turn things around, starting in the Premiership confrontation against Motherwell at Fir Park at High Noon tomorrow.

The under-pressure gaffer, speaking to the Daily Record, said: “I might have to revert back a little bit. If I am going to get performances like I did against Sparta Prague, then, yeah, because it will be my head that is on the block.

“I’ve got to cut the malaise. It’s my job to nip it in the bud. And maybe become that little bit tougher on them now. To get some response for them. A proper response.

“Maybe I’ve gone too far in terms of that, I don’t know. Maybe getting a little bit harder on them might be the way forward. A little bit. But then you can get criticised for that.

“Ultimately, they are professional footballers and the reputation of the club is important. If they fall below that standard, then they need reminding of their responsibilities.

“But we have only ourselves to blame for putting ourselves under pressure with performances like that.

“You are going to get criticised and this time I think it will be justified.

“So, we need to have a real good look at it and I need to change the culture a little bit.”

There was a clear lack of fight, courage and fortitude against the Czech Republic who, despite having a depleted team due to injury and Covid-19 issues, scored four and also hit the woodwork twice during a shambolic display from the home side.

Reflecting on a sloppy, unacceptable display, Lennon added: “That was not a reflection of me.

“I’ve told them that. That’s not a reflection on me and how I want my teams to play. So, I need to change the culture.”

 
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