Neil Lennon hints David Turnbull, Ismaila Soro and Conor Hazard could have cemented Celtic places
Celtic manager Neil Lennon hinted that David Turnbull and Ismaila Soro had played there way into the team that will face Kilmarnock on Sunday following their scintillating showings in the 3-2 victory over Lille.
Lennon turned to a number of his fringe players following a run of two wins in 12 and, with Turnbull netting the winner and Soro proving a warrior, the pair brought the fizz missing for so much of this season for the ailing Scottish champions. And Lennon conceded that the presence of the pair - who took the places of captain Scott Brown and Tom Rogic - won’t necessarily be a one-off.
“They [Turnbull] have done well enough to merit a place in the team, as have some of the others,” he said, with Conor Hazard debuting in goal for the club. “I’d love to win on Sunday now to back it up. That’s all we are thinking about. It was a really good competitive game against quality opposition. We came through it pretty well and defended when we needed to and attacked brilliantly when we needed to. Overall a good win and now we move on to Kilmarnock on Sunday when we have to win.”
Lennon was keen not to overplay a first morale-boosting result in six games, which also ended a five-match winless run at Celtic Park. “It’s a positive. It’s nothing more, nothing less,“ he said. “It’s baby steps in the right direction and we need to build from that. We got the desired performance and hope it will be a catalyst. Turnbull and Soro had great games. [Patryk] Klimala and young [Ewan] Henderson played really well. There was just a nice good vibe about it.”
And the vibe that Lennon sent out over the potential for Hazard being retained in goal with Vasilis Barkas and Scott Bain struggling for confidence, was unmistakable. “He [Hazard] has been training really well, his attitude has been brilliant,” said Lennon. “He has really been knocking on the door and I spoke to him about this game a couple of weeks ago. We kept to that promise and he did very, very well with a very assured performance under the spotlight. He can be delighted with his nice work. We have three fine goalkeepers and it [the position] is up for grabs.”
A message from the Editor:
Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by coronavirus impacts our advertisers. If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.
Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.