Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 17 April 2014

Neil Lennon says there is 'nothing he can do' about Rowan Vine's Twitter rant

Celtic manager Neil Lennon
Celtic manager Neil Lennon

Celtic boss Neil Lennon has said "there is nothing he can do" about Hibernian forward Rowan Vine's rant about him on Twitter.

Lennon addressed fully for the first time comments made towards him following Celtic's 1-1 draw at Easter Road last Saturday.

The Northern Irishman had complained about Hibernian's tackling in the match and Vine had taken exception to Lennon singling him out for a challenge on Hoops debutant Darnell Fisher. Lennon described it as "rugby-esque".

Vine made reference in his Twitter postings to an incident in a Newcastle versus Leicester game in 1998 when Alan Shearer kicked Lennon, then a City midfielder, in the head.

The Englishman wrote: "Read Sir Neil Lennon's comments regarding tackles in y'days game and said my tackle was 'rugby-esque'. I mean I know he likes the snus. But has he been smoking something else. I hardly touched the boy and there were no 'reckless' tackles in the game.

"Might get me mate Alan Shearer to send him another size 9 Umbro Speciali in the dish if he don't pipe down."

Lennon replied on his own Twitter account, writing: "Did I read that right?"

Vine later apologised to Lennon and Hibernian boss Pat Fenlon said he dealt with the issue in-house after speaking to the player.

However, the Scottish Football Association confirmed to Press Association Sport that the matter is being looked at.

Lennon said: "I am assuming the authorities will look at it, rather than myself. There is nothing I can do about it.

"I don't run the game and I don't make the laws up. I think there is a line you can't cross when it comes to saying anything in public, either personal or against a club so I will leave that to be the powers that be.

"We have had discussions about it (use of social media) yes, with the players regarding themselves and their wives as well."

In the absence of traditional city rivals Rangers from the top flight, Lennon is looking forward to an alternative Glasgow derby against Maryhill men Partick, who have yet to win a home league game this season after returning to the top flight.

He said: "It is a derby and I haven't had one of them for a while so I am looking forward to it.

"I could literally walk to the stadium from the house - but I'm not going to, obviously.

"I am sure it will be a full house and a cracking atmosphere.

"Thistle have been excellent. I watched them against Hibs and they were very unfortunate not to get at least a point and they had a brilliant result (against Inverness) last week.

"Their style of football is very pleasing on the eye."