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Celtic Get Back To Winning Ways
Published : 22 Sep 2011 17:33:52
Celtic made no mistake about getting to the League Cup quarter-finals Neil Lennon was satisfied with his players' reaction to Sunday's Old Firm defeat following their 2-0 victory over Ross County. A 14th-minute tap-in from Gary Hooper settled any nerves suffered facing a team who beat them in the 2010 Scottish Cup semi-finals. It was game over when Scott Boyd could not avoid scoring an own goal in the 52nd-minute. There were five changes in the side put out by Lennon for last night's game after Sunday's 4-2 defeat by Rangers, although all those dropping out had been suffering with injury. The Celtic manager felt his players responded well to questions over their character following their second half collapse at Ibrox. He said: "I got the reaction I wanted from the players. The attitude was a lot better, the work rate off the ball was a lot better and our play in general was a lot better. It's a small step in the right direction. We're not getting carried away obviously but we're pleased with the clean sheet as well and on the counter attack we could have added to the scoreline. I can't ask for any more of the players. Obviously they were disappointed and we had to pick them up. We got the early goal and that settled us. There were some good individual performances from (Charlie) Mulgrew and (Joe) Ledley. On the back of Sunday people might have been thinking we were a bit vulnerable so I'm pleased. It was difficult and you are always looking to see what character they've got and they showed that." Lennon knew all about injuries to Ki Sung-yueng, Georgios Samaras, Mark Wilson and Scott Brown on the eve of the game and all four dropped out along with Glenn Loovens, who had a stiff hamstring. Lennon also explained the absence of Kris Commons from the squad. The winger was at Dingwall after being left out of Sunday's Old Firm derby following a groin problem. The manager said: "He trained on Monday and Tuesday and he reported at the airport and felt a stiffness in the groin. He could be a doubt for Saturday." Kelvin Wilson is also a worry ahead of the visit of Inverness after being forced off at half-time following a foul by Colin McMenamin. Lennon said: "He got one down the back of the Achilles so we will have to wait and see. He is limping about the dressing room and he could be a doubt for Saturday." Ross County boss Derek Adams had no complaints about the result. He said: "I thought we started well, lost a goal, after that we hit the post through Michael Gardyne. Second half, I didn't think we were in the game and Celtic thoroughly deserved to win the match."