O'Neill going nowhere - Lennox

Bobby Lennox is praying that continuous speculation linking Martin O’Neill with other management roles will now come to an end.

Bobby Lennox is praying that continuous speculation linking Martin O’Neill with other management roles will now come to an end.

The Celtic legend has become tired with the constant rumours suggesting that the Parkhead boss will soon be quitting for a top English club.

There was also concern that O’Neill would step down at Parkhead because of the ill health of his wife Geraldine.

But while his domestic situation has forced him to miss the first part of his side’s North American tour, O’Neill has pledged his future to the club.

“I am glad those jobs (at Chelsea and Liverpool) went by without much commotion,” Lennox told the Press Association.

“I don’t understand why he is asked the same questions week in, week out. He says all the time that he isn’t going and that should be it.

“We would be absolutely delighted if Martin doesn’t go and I hope he stays at Parkhead for many years.”

Lennox is now backing O’Neill to erase the one blot on his copybook at Parkhead and take the club to the latter stages of the Champions League for the first time in their history.

The former European Cup winner knows what it takes to lift the trophy and he knows what a fine line it is between success and failure.

The Lisbon Lion added: “We have been to the final of the UEFA Cup and quarter-finals. Porto were a good team and a better side than a lot of people gave them credit for.

“They proved that last time. I know that they did a lot of diving and rolling about which spoiled it but they had good players, played as a team and were well organised.

“The last two years Celtic have been inches away from the latter stages of the Champions League but the experiences of the past few seasons will stand them in good stead.

“I can still see the shot Chris Sutton had in Basle, inches by the post, that would have taken them to the next stages and then the late goal in Lyon.

“The line between the first stage and the second stage is thin. If a shot goes in you’re great and if not then you’re not so great.

“They have not been outplayed not getting to the second stages but just unfortunate.

“Even when they got beat against 10 men away to Anderlecht they were unlucky and it just wasn’t right on the night which happens. This year will be different I’m sure of it.”

Celtic will be weak without sidelined duo Shaun Maloney and John Kennedy but Lennox is confident they will both make full recoveries from injury to come back stronger.

He said: “They are two disciplined boys and I expect them to come back strongly.

“The good thing is that it has happened young enough for them to come back and it hasn’t happened in their mid-30s.

“They have got youth and everything on their side to come back and they will be stronger for this.”

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