Noel Whelan insists Shane Duffy deserves his savaging from critics after Celtic dropped two points at Aberdeen.
The former Aberdeen and Leeds United striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, said that the defeat to Rangers was “massive” and has shot the confidence of Neil Lennon’s side.
A 3-3 draw against the Dons last weekend made it eight goals conceded in just three games for the Hoops, who have now fallen six points adrift of league leaders Rangers.
Speaking to Sky Sports after the result, Partick Thistle defender Richard Foster suggested Neil Lennon drop Duffy from the starting eleven.
Whelan is adamant that the Republic of Ireland international is “a big enough man” to take the criticism on the chin.
“The Rangers defeat was massive,” he told Football Insider.
“The whole team is lacking in confidence. It has faded.
“They are shipping in too many goals and they are cheap goals. They are gifting them. That is something that Neil Lennon needs to work on from now until the next game.
“Look, Duffy has to take the criticism and the praise. When he first came he got a goal on his debut and everyone was shouting about what a great signing he was.
“This has happened to him before. This is not a surprise to Shane Duffy. He is a big enough man to take it when it is not going right.
“When a team is shipping in goals, naturally you look to the defence but I have to say it is not just him. It is a collective responsibility. They need to be more aggressive and show some steel in that defence.”
In other Celtic news, Alan Hutton fiercely defends Celtic 27-yr-old after BBC pundit savaging.