Neil Lennon should be remembered by Celtic for all of the trophies he won as a manager and player and not for this season’s “blip”, according to Kevin Phillips.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Sunderland and England striker said the 49-year-old should “not shoulder all of the blame” for this season and should be hailed by fans upon his return to Parkhead in years to come.
Lennon resigned as Hoops boss on Wednesday, after a turbulent campaign both on and off the field left the club 18 points behind Glasgow rivals Rangers in the Scottish Premiership.
He led Celtic to two league titles, two Scottish Cups and a League Cup in his second spell in charge.
Phillips is adamant that Lennon will be remembered by the club’s “amazing” fans for his achievements and not his failures.
“I hope they remember him for the right reasons and they should do,” he told Football Insider.
“Let’s compare it, look at Liverpool, who would have thought they would have slumped and lost so many matches. Sometimes it is a sign that they need to restructure and shift a load of players.
“I just hope that Neil Lennon is not solely judged on this season. He has won so much for that football club, as a manager and a player. If they have got a museum up there, he needs to go in it for what he did for that club.
“At times, he was getting vile abuse online and even then he kept doing his job. Everyone is to blame for this season, he should not shoulder all of the blame.
“When he comes back to the football club in years to come I hope the crowds give him a great welcome back and I am sure that they will because they are amazing football fans up there. It is a blip and his legacy is amazing.”
In other news, Celtic work on signing a Wigan 19-year-old on pre-contract deal.