Neil Lennon happy to avoid mishaps


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Neil Lennon felt his Celtic side had avoided a potential banana skin and kept their composure
in the face of some questionable tactics after overcoming Sarajevo 5-2 on aggregate in their opening Champions League qualifier.

Goals from Ryan Christie and Callum McGregor ensured a 2-1 home win for Celtic on Wednesday evening in the second leg, a game in which Lennon felt the visiting side went overboard at times.

“They were a bit agricultural to say the least,” Lennon said. “At least one of them warranted a red card. At this level, referees sometimes see the game a little bit differently to us. That’s what I’ve learned. You’re better off saying nothing and letting it be.

“It was really important [the players remained calm] because discipline is a big factor and we don’t want to lose anyone for the upcoming games.

“We know how difficult, fraught and tense these qualifiers are but the experience some of the players have got will hopefully stand them in good stead going forward.”

Celtic will now face Estonian side Nomme Kalju in the second round of qualifying after they shocked Macedonian outfit Shkendija.

The Hoops boss was content with the win over Sarajevo and anticipates his players improving for the experience. “We were in good control after the first leg and Sarajevo were coming out with nothing to lose,” he added.

“We handled that very well with a pretty makeshift back four. I was delighted with the attacking verve and intent we played with.

“We are a week fitter now, we will be a week fitter again going into the second qualifying round. Guys like Leigh Griffiths, Christopher Jullien and Scott Sinclair can be more up to speed.”

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