Lennon: Old Firm rivalry vital for Scottish game to be taken seriously
NEIL LENNON has claimed Scottish football will only be taken seriously by outsiders once a competitive Rangers are back in the top tier,
The former Celtic manager is one who believes the Scottish Premiership has missed the tension and drama of Old Firm matches, and the competition of the two of them going for the league title. This is not a point of view shared by every supporter, especially those who follow his old club.
Lennon played at a time when the Glasgow derby was one of the biggest games in European football. It was during this period when the mismanagement of Rangers eventually led to their liquidation which subsequently meant the club having to start again in what was then the Third Division. If the Ibrox club are unable to challenge for a few seasons more, then for the game in this country to flourish, Lennon says Celtic must become regulars in the Champions League once again.
“I don’t think the Scottish game will be taken seriously again [on the outside] until the balance of power is an equilibrium again with Celtic and Rangers,” said the Bolton manager. “That will really attract the attention again. If that’s not the case then Celtic in Europe is very important.”
Lennon also revealed he has not given up hope of one day returning to Celtic where as player, captain and then manager, became one of the most loved figures in the club’s long history. “It was the right time to leave,” he said. “Do I regret it? No. Would I go back? Yes, I would like to be around the club again at some stage in my career.”
LENNON: Has left the door open for a return to Celtic