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Celtic's attitude has to get better if we're to mount a title challenge, admits Neil Lennon

Hibernian 2 Celtic 2

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Caption: Celtic’s Scott Bain (left) and Shane Duffy walk off the Easter Road pitch

Caption: Celtic’s Scott Bain (left) and Shane Duffy walk off the Easter Road pitch

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Caption: Celtic’s Scott Bain (left) and Shane Duffy walk off the Easter Road pitch

Neil Lennon denied Celtic's title hopes were hanging by a thread but has warned his players an improvement in attitude is needed.

Lennon's side slipped 11 points behind Scottish Premiership leaders Rangers after being held to a 2-2 draw by Hibernian.

Hibs had led 2-0 with 11 minutes left before Odsonne Edouard's penalty and Diego Laxalt's stoppage-time leveller prevented Celtic slumping to a fourth defeat in eight games.

Celtic had won eight on the spin before this difficult run and put together 12 and nine-match winning streaks in all competitions before and after last New Year.

"There is a long way to go," the Celtic boss said.

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Neil Lennon laments lack of consistency

Neil Lennon laments lack of consistency

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Neil Lennon laments lack of consistency

 

"But what I'm looking for is a level of performance, getting a run together. But the attitude of some of the players has to be be better.

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"The game was endemic of our season: we had a good spell, a really poor spell and then 20 minutes of brilliance. So they are capable of that, but they have got to start really wanting to put it all together for the 90 (minutes).

"The players have to start concentrating and show a lot more desire than what they are showing.

"This team is capable of going on a good run but they have to be all together, they have to be mentally tuned, week in, week out. It was apparent that some of them switched off mentally.

"We don't do the dirty bits of the game well enough at times and we need to get rid of that softness, because teams are highly motivated to play against us."

Celtic goalkeeper Scott Bain is confident the champions can rediscover their consistency and go on the sort of winning run that has carried them home in recent seasons.

"We have always shown it before," he said. "You have seen at the turn of the year the last three or four years, how we have really steamrollered teams from then on.

"There's a lot of games to be played, December is a really busy month, so we need the full squad to be together for that.

Jeremie Frimpong and Nir Bitton were culpable as Celtic lost two goals in quick succession, failing to track Jamie Murphy as he netted a penalty rebound.

The right-back then allowed the goalscorer a free header to set up Kevin Nisbet to evade Bitton and fire home.

Bain added: "We seem to be making mistakes and being punished for it, that's the way it is going right now. But I don't think we are too far off. We probably should have been way ahead before they scored."

Hibernian: Marciano, P McGinn, Porteous,Hanlon, Mackie, Boyle, Mallan (Hallberg 84), Gogic, Newell (S McGinn 89), Murphy (Gray 80), Nisbet.

Subs Not Used: Wright, Gullan, McGregor,Doig, Barnes, Bradley.

Celtic: Bain, Frimpong, Bitton, Ajer, Laxalt, Brown (Duffy 72), McGregor, Christie, Rogic (Ntcham 87), Elyounoussi (Griffiths 72), Ajeti (Edouard 58).

Subs Not Used: Barkas, Taylor, Klimala, Elhamed, Henderson.

Referee: Bobby Madden (Scotland).

Man of the match: Jamie Murphy

Match rating: 7/10


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