Lennon hails Celtic's 'great performance'
Celtic manager Neil Lennon hailed the manner in which his side came back from a goal down to secure a 3-1 win over FK Sarajevo in their first qualifying round Champions League tie.
The Scottish champions went a goal down after some poor defending at the back, but goals from Mikey Johnston, Odsonne Edouard and Scott Sinclair turned the tie on its head and secured what was in the end a dominant performance, one that effectively kills off the tie as a whole.
Speaking to the official Celtic website after the match, Lennon said: “I thought we were fantastic, especially considering where we are in terms of our condition and our lack of match fitness, it was a really strong performance.
“We needed that, because Sarajevo were good and physically very strong, and we knew they’d be a threat at set-plays.
“We conceded and then we got a great response from Mikey, and from then on we controlled the game. To score three goals away from home, I’m very, very pleased with that.”
He added: “Once we opened the game up, we were able to stretch them and wear them down and we looked a lot more in control of the game. The subs that came on made a great contribution as well.
“It’s always important to score away from home, and while I didn’t think the tie was getting away from us at any point, we knew that they were strong at set-plays. That’s obviously an area we’ll have to work on, and with the likes of Christopher Jullien coming in, that’ll help in that area as well. Our overall play and overall standard of play was very good.”
Man of the match Mikey Johnston and new signing Boli Bolingoli-Mbomba both limped off injured, but Lennon wasn’t worried about either player.
"Mikey felt a twinge in his quad," Lennon said. "So we're hoping it's not too serious. Boli rolled his ankle in the first half and it just got progressively worse.
"We had to fit a few square pegs in round holes because of where we are with the squad. But the attitude, fitness of the players and quality of the goals made it a really good start."