January 31, 2023

Celtic hero Neil Lennon admits he was baffled that the Hoopes didn’t get a second-half penalty at Ibrox for handballing Connor Goldson.

Referee John Beaton brushed aside Hoops’ cries as a volley from Karl Starfelt appeared to land Goldson in the hands from close range after a corner was taken.



Neil Lennon was baffled that he was not given what he considered to be a definite punishment.1 credit
Starfelt's shot was blocked by Goldson's arm.


Starfelt’s shot was blocked by Goldson’s arm.Credit: Willy Wass

It could be argued that the Rangers star’s arms weren’t in an unnatural position, as his arms were raised to protect his face and didn’t make his body look bigger.

Presumably that was what Willie Collum thought in the VAR room when he believed Beaton hadn’t made a clear and obvious mistake and didn’t ask him to review the footage.

Lennon, however, thinks it was PURE handball.

He said BoyleSports.com: Celtic should have converted a penalty, it’s a clear handball.

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“I was puzzled that the decision was not made after it was sent to VAR.

“I’m not sure if the referees explained why it wasn’t given, but after seeing it a few times it was a definite penalty.”

As for the punishment that WAS given that day after Karl Starfelt attacked Fashion Sakala, Lennon thinks the Swede has only himself to blame.


There was contact between the two men, although it is doubtful how much it was initiated by the Zambian.

Lennon said: “You can argue about the Rangers penalty, but Karl Starfelt really committed himself to the cause by collapsing to the ground.

“When you do such a task at such a pace and do it wrong, you put yourself in danger.


“Starfelt is out of control.”

Lennon, meanwhile, refused to close the door on the prospect of returning to Hoops for a third time as manager later in his career.

He said: “I have had the great honor of managing Celtic for six years in two different periods, but at the moment Ange Postekoglou is a great manager who is doing a great job.

“I would never say no to a return to Celtic but at the moment it’s a long way off.”

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