“I was really disappointed in them at the weekend, there is no point in hiding away from that.”
Neil Lennon has once again come out strongly against his players, asking them to show “professional pride” ahead of their trip to Kilmarnock on Tuesday night.
The Celtic manager is in no doubt that he needs a response from his players, after recent defeats have left them a staggering 23 points behind Old Firm rivals Rangers, with just two games in hand.
“You’ve got to have your professional pride so I am hoping for a reaction tomorrow evening,” Lennon said in his pre-match press conference.
“To lose games is bitterly disappointing, and off the back of a really good performance last Wednesday (against Hamilton) we failed to show consistency of performance again.
“They have it in them, there is plenty of evidence of that, they just need to find a rhythm of playing well and winning games.”
While Lennon is happy to take some of the blame, he has put the onus back on his players to respond after poor recent performances.
“You express disappointment at the level of performance and players have to look at themselves and say, ‘can I play better, can I get myself in better condition, can I do more for the team, can I do more for the club, can I do more for the manager?’ And the answer is yes,” Lennon said.
“Regardless of whether they respond to me or not, they have their own personal responsibility and pride in their performances as individuals and as a collective.
“The bottom line is the players can play better. I have a lot of faith in them.
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) January 30, 2021
However, the former Celtic captain expressed his disappointment with his players on Saturday, saying they were “simply not up to the standards we ask of them.”
“I was really disappointed in them at the weekend, there is no point in hiding away from that,” Lennon continued.
“It is simply not up to the standards we ask of them or we believe they can produce.
“So the result and performance was really disappointing and I don’t think the players would disagree with that either.”