Saturday 3 December 2016

Lennon lavishes praise on Forrest

Published 23/08/2010 | 05:00

Celtic manager Neil Lennon struggled to contain his praise for youngster James Forrest after his mature display against St Mirren at Parkhead yesterday.

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Lennon is trying to minimise the growing hype about Forrest, who is seen as a long-term replacement for the departed Aiden McGeady, but feels he has no option but to promote the 19-year-old midfielder to first-team duty. Forrest scored Celtic's third goal in a 4-0 success over St Mirren which also saw Joe Ledley, Shaun Maloney and Ki Sung Yueng find the net.

Lennon said: "I'm trying to keep a lid on the kid, not banging the drum but trying to play it down, but I couldn't keep him out of the team any longer. He was ready to play and I think everybody saw how good he can be.

"He's an exciting player with an eye for goal. He's an old-fashioned winger who just wants to hurt people. He like a kid that's come in off the street and said, 'right, throw me a ball, I'm ready to play'."

Ledley put Celtic ahead on six minutes and when Maloney claimed a second before half-time with a deflected effort, the out-come was never in serious doubt.

Forrest's moment came after 68 minutes, but the pick of the goals was still to come, Ki Sung-yueng's late hit from well outside the area taking the plaudits.

Irish Independent

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