Celtic boss Neil Lennon feels...
Soccer

Celtic boss Neil Lennon feels their Europa League progress is good for Scottish football

Celtic manager Neil Lennon hopes their progress in the Europa League will show people the standard of football in Scotland isn't as bad as some make it out to be.

His side sealed their place in the knockout stages with two group games to spare, after securing a last-minute win over Lazio in Rome last night.

"Obviously I feel immense pride, satisfaction and happiness," Lennon said of the victory in the Italian capital.

"We've qualified and that's a huge feather in our cap but the quality of the performances over the four games has been absolutely fantastic. Last night was the icing on the cake.

"It speaks volumes of the personality of the squad. I didn't think we'd qualify this quickly.

"It's good for the reputation of the game here in Scotland which takes a battering sometimes. It's good recognition for Scottish football."

The former Northern Ireland midfielder is in his second stint in charge at Parkhead and he feels they've recovered from losing previous boss Brendan Rodgers to Leicester in the second-half of last season:

"It feels for the first time in my second stint as manager like real Celtic again; that love, that pride, that connection. They helped the team enormously.

"When I came back in February there was a disconnection with Brendan (Rodgers) leaving. We lost a great manager and there was a disconnection between certain supporters and the club.

"But it was all connected again last night. There was real pride and it felt like the old days for me. Sending them home happy was as pleasing to me as winning the game with the players."

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