Next Game

Karabakh-Azersu v Celtic

Wednesday, 05 August 2015, 17:30

Champions League Qualifying Third Round

Celtic Park

Last Game

Celtic 2 - 0 Ross Co

Saturday, 01 August 2015, 12:45

Scots Prem

Lennon's Euro frustration

Neil Lennon says he is "baffled" by the fact his Celtic side have to play in a Champions League qualifier despite reaching the last 16 last season.

Last Updated: 17/07/13 at 20:59 Post Comment

Neil Lennon: Feels Celtic should enter the Champions League at a later stage due

Neil Lennon: Feels Celtic should enter the Champions League at a later stage due

The Bhoys are currently in Belfast preparing for a Champions League second qualifying round first leg against Cliftonville on Wednesday evening.

The game comes just 53 days after their final game of last season, the 3-0 Scottish Cup final win over Hibernian, and just two weeks into their pre-season preparations.

Despite lifting their 44th SPL title last May, Lennon's men must begin their European adventure at this stage - one stage earlier than in 2012 - due to Scotland's position in UEFA's country ranking list.

It is all the more galling for the club given their memorable run to the knock-out stages of last season's competition, which included a famous win over Barcelona at Parkhead in November.

Lennon feels their exploits last campaign should be recognised by Europe's governing body with a later entry into this year's competition.

"I'm baffled that after beating Barcelona and reaching the last 16 we have an extra qualifier. It has to be looked at by UEFA," said the 42-year-old in the Daily Record.

"I don't think it's fair considering the season we had and the amount of games we played. We could be out by next week.

"We are champions of our country and reached the last 16 last season. There should be some dispensation for clubs who do well the previous season. It's really harsh we're playing so early."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

G

ood lord that's got me unnecessarily excited. Damn you Storey. Cut to Liverpool being crushed under the wheels of Sparky's Stoke Machine and Firmino brought off the bench to no effect. It's the hope that kills you.

suarez_blind
Roberto Firmino: Steel To Complement The Silk

N

o Schweini? Have to admit that I did a little sex wee when we signed him and I can't wait to see him in action!!!

spence
F365's Top Ten Players We Can't Wait To Watch

I

think he'll do quite well. My only reservation would be Kagawa, who had similar stats to Firmino in the bundesliga before he came, but time will tell.

GVMUFC
Roberto Firmino: Steel To Complement The Silk

Footer 365

Manchester City agree £14m fee with Roma for Edin Dzeko

Sky sources understand Manchester City have agreed a £14m fee with Roma for striker Edin Dzeko.

Angel Di Maria is 'very happy' to join PSG from Manchester United

Angel Di Maria's move to PSG from Manchester United looks set to go through after he expressed happiness at the deal.

Liverpool's Jordon Ibe says he needs more end product

Liverpool winger Jordon Ibe says he must be looking contribute a goal or assist in every game he plays.

Mail Box

Louis Van Gaal Only Wants Football Robots

Louis van Gaal only wants players who are human robots, apparently. It's a great Mailbox, with thoughts on Chelsea, Audi Cup, Fabregas, Lingard and Joe Gomez...

Is Jack Wilshere The New Diaby?

This was supposed to be his season but he is already injured. We have mails on Chelsea, TV football, why Raheem Sterling is worth more than ADM and more...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company