Despite a 0-2 loss on Thursday, Celtic FC boss Neil Lennon is impressed with two of his stars’ performances against CFR Cluj.
Celtic FC boss Neil Lennon made the decision to play what essentially could be described as the “reserve” squad on Thursday against CFR Cluj. The match represented the final match of the Europa League Group Stage, and Celtic had already locked up the top seed in the group ahead of the match.
With the opportunity to play a game in the Europa League that presented zero consequences if lost, Neil Lennon capitalized on the opportunity. The Hoops boss was able to start Scott Robertson, which marked his debut for the club. Meanwhile, Karamoko Dembele was brought in late in the match as a substitute, making him the youngest Celtic player to ever play in Europe.
The experience both of these two young players were able to obtain should be considered invaluable. On top of the experience, both of them played well, even while considering the loss. Lennon’s plan to see what he had in both of them worked to perfection.
Neil Lennon spoke with Celtic TV after the match, and had nothing but praise for his two stars, and had this to say about Dembele:
“We think very highly of him.
“I wanted to give him some experience.
“I want to keep him around the team squad because we think he’s a real talent. I wanted to give him a little bit of experience at this level.”
Clearly the Hoops skipper has big plans for Karamoko Dembele in the future, and this exposure is good for the youngster.
On the topic of Scott Robertson, Lennon spoke similarly:
“Scott Robertson also had a terrific debut. His performance delighted me. I thought it was a superb debut for an 18-year-old to come in and play in that environment so maturely and with a lot of composure.”
Both youngsters and future superstars played well on Thursday in the Europa League, and Lennon knows exactly what he is doing when it comes to their development. Hoops fans have a ton to look forward to when dreaming about the future.