Rangers 0-1 Celtic: Neil Lennon hails ‘amazing’ 10-man cup winners
Celtic were “fortunate” to survive a Rangers bombardment and lift the League Cup with 10 men, says manager Neil Lennon.
Lennon’s side clinched a fourth League Cup in a row as Christopher Jullien’s goal settled a dramatic final.
Celtic had Jeremie Frimpong sent off while goalkeeper Fraser Forster pulled off a string of saves, including saving Alfredo Morelos’ penalty.
“This team just doesn’t know when it’s beaten,” Lennon told BBC Scotland.
“We weren’t great today but we still won and that’s what cup football is all about.
“They still dig it out and dig it out. They’re amazing.”
Celtic have now won 10 consecutive domestic trophies in a row after Frenchman Jullien slammed in the winner with Celtic’s only shot on target, though the defender appeared a yard offside.
But three minutes later in a frantic contest, Frimpong was sent off after fouling Morelos in the box, only for Forster to save the Colombian’s penalty.
“Fraser Forster was outstanding,” said Lennon. “He made some unbelievable saves, world-class saves.
“We didn’t get going in the first half, second half we were better. The introduction of Odsonne [Edouard] gave us a real spark. The mentality of the team is amazing. They’ve won 10 in a row – I don’t know how they do it.
“You’ve got to give credit to Rangers today they played great and made the cup final what it was.”
‘Played better with 10 men’
Lennon also hailed the performance of right-back Frimpong – who is just two days short of his 19th birthday – despite his red card. And the Celtic manager also gave a special mention to “unbelievable” centre-back Kristoffer Ajer.
“You fear the worst at 10 men anyway, there’s 25 minutes still to go,” said the Northern Irishman. “We actually played better with 10 men at times.
“It’s been a tumultuous run of games, we’ve come through it. It’s 12 wins in a row. Yes we were fortunate today, I’ll admit that, but that’s what happens in cup finals – we need that resilience and quality to get over the line.
“I didn’t even celebrate it [the goal]. I was too wrapped up in how we were playing and how we were going to get a proper foothold in the game.
“We are talking 10 major trophies now in a row. We don’t want to give anything up. We weren’t great today but we still won and that’s what cup football is all about.”