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What is football coming to?
Published : 12 May 2011 10:42:34Rss feed
Just how much longer can Neil Lennon cope with the dangers he is under as Celtic manager Officials from the SFA and the SPL have begun an investigation after Neil Lennon was involved in a scuffle with a Hearts fan at Tynecastle last night. After Gary Hooper scored his second goal in the 49th minute, the fan managed to get past the security in place at the Edinburgh ground and evade Alan Thompson to attack Lennon as he was guiding his side to a 3-0 win. Thankfully, the fan appeared to lose his footing before he could make contact and was bundled away after Thompson, stewards and finally the police forced him to the ground. The intruder left the ground in the arms of the police and arrested, but the SFA , Stewart Regan, and SPL chief executive, Neil Doncaster, were due to meet todayto discuss the incident . Regan said: "Clearly this kind of behaviour from supporters is wholly unacceptable. The safety of players, club officials and match officials is paramount on or around the field of play, and this clear breach of security is a matter I will be discussing with SPL chief executive Neil Doncaster." Doncaster said: "The SPL deplores the actions of the individual involved. This type of behaviour has no place in Scottish football. The SPL will undertake a full investigation and will be reviewing reports from the SPL match delegate, match officials, the police and the clubs." This is the latest unsavoury incident to involve Lennon in a season in which he has had bullets sent to him in the post and a parcel bomb intercepted, as well as having to cope with living with round-the-clock security. Lennon's assistant Johan Mjallby admits he would not blame Lennon for walking away from the game in Scotland. He said: "He is a strong character, he has coped with much. The backroom staff are desperate for him to continue but no one could blame him if he decided not to. I would never blame him whatever he does. I'm shocked and Neil must be even more afraid. What if he (the supporter) had something in his hand? But it is too early to say how Neil will react. I am shocked myself, I see it on television all over the world but I haven't seen it myself. We all have to look into this, a manager should be secure inside a football ground." Hearts will be worried about sanctions imposed on them as their security was not up to the job on Wednesday. The club have also launched an investigation promised to work with the authorities. The club released a statement which said: "An investigation into events which took place in the second half of the game against Celtic is now under way. Hearts is a club which prides itself on its 'Football for All' policy and these sorts of actions have no place in the game of football. We will give our full support to the stewards and police authorities in the ensuing investigation into the events at the match."