By Danny Wright

18th Aug, 2017 | 10:24am

Ferguson delivers surprising verdict on Lennon flashpoint in Rangers loss v Hibernian

By Danny Wright

Barry Ferguson has surprisingly sided with his old foe Neil Lennon in the debate that has surrounded his touchline antics in Hibernian’s 3-2 win at Rangers last weekend.

Celtic icon, now Hibs manager, Lennon cupped his ears and appeared to goad the Ibrox crowd after Simon Murray scored an equalising goal for the Edinburgh club in the first-half.

That flashpoint sparked Hibernian into life as they went on to earn all three points in Glasgow.

The Northern Irishman, 46, is no stranger to controversy and has since been embroiled in a war of words with Pedro Caixinha, with each manager hitting out at one another for their actions at the game.

But Ferguson, 39, has put aside his rivalry with Lennon, who he had multiple scuffles with during his playing career, and sided with him, saying that it’s only natural to respond to abuse from the crowd of a rival team.

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“There’s nothing wrong with a wee bit of needle. The more the merrier as far as I’m concerned,” said Ferguson in his column on the Daily Record website.

“So don’t expect me to join the clamour for Neil Lennon to be hammered for what went on at Ibrox last weekend.

“Because if I’m ever lucky enough to be standing in the away dugout at Celtic Park watching a team of mine scoring, I promise you I’ll not be holding back with my celebrations either. And why should I?”

He added: “People get their knickers in a twist over guys like us because of the rivalry between Rangers and Celtic. I’ll always be seen as a Rangers man just as Lenny will always be synonymous with Celtic.

“So he knew what he was walking into on Saturday and I would expect to get exactly the same treatment at Parkhead.”

Ferguson and Lennon were two of the greatest Old Firm rivals of the modern age, both of which have now dipped their toes into management.

Lennon got his first gig at his beloved Celtic while Ferguson has recently parted company with Clyde after a three-year spell.

In other Rangers news, this in-form 26-year-old is the next most likely to leave Ibrox.

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