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Neil Lennon's Celtic award fury

ESPN staff
April 26, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
Celtic boss Neil Lennon believes his players' achievements deserved to be recognised © PA Photos
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Neil Lennon believes Celtic's snub in the PFA Scotland's player of the year award is "abysmal" after none of his players were named in the shortlist for the top gong.

Gary Hooper, who has scored 18 league goals this season, was overlooked for the award in favour of Hibernian's Leigh Griffiths, Motherwell's Michael Higdon, Aberdeen's Niall McGinn and Inverness' Andrew Shinnie.

The Scottish Football Association confirmed seven Celtic players received votes but were outranked for the shortlist, although Lennon believes the Scottish champions' achievements have been disregarded.

"It beggars belief that we make a semi-final of the League Cup, final of the Scottish Cup, win the championship, make the last 16 of Europe, beating Barcelona, beating Spartak Moscow, putting the country on the map again, and I think the outcome of those votes belittles all the efforts of the players," Lennon said. "I think it's abysmal.

"Are people voting for the best player in Scotland or the most improved player in Scotland? There's a huge difference in my eyes and that's not taking anything from the candidates that were nominated. They have all had fine seasons, but to not have one Celtic player in that group is unbelievable."

It has been suggested that the votes for Celtic players were spread throughout the team rather than focused on one player, but Lennon insists that is no excuse.

"I have no idea what way the voting goes but you can't tell me that Fraser Forster, Victor Wanyama, Kris Commons, Kelvin Wilson, Gary Hooper weren't in the forefronts of people's minds when the votes were made. It's ridiculous," Lennon added.

"There is a lot of ill will in the dressing room now. The players are very, very disappointed with the outcome. They have performed heroically."

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