‘Stupid and unprofessional’ – Former Wolves star slammed for Celtic behaviour


Former Wolves striker Leigh Griffiths has come under-fire after Celtic left him at home while the club headed out on their pre-season tour.

Our colleagues at the Daily Record are reporting that Griffiths has been left at home to work on his fitness as the squad head to France to take on Lyon, Nice and PSG in friendlies.

They report that Neil Lennon is understood to be furious with the frontman’s condition and has ordered him to get up to speed at home.

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The news has been met with a scathing response from former Celtic striker turned pundit, Chris Sutton.

Sutton blasted: “Everyone knows the hard yards you need to go through in lockdown – there are no excuses. It was vital to maintain focus and stay on top of fitness.

“The players would all have had programmes.

“It’s just stupid. Neil Lennon will feel let down. If I was a team-mate I’d feel hacked off.

“Griffiths had a huge part in Celtic winning the title. He got a lot of credit the way he came back from his problems and rightly so.

“To have fitness issues at this stage though is just unprofessional.”

“It wouldn’t surprise me if he managed to get Griffiths back to a level again.

“A lot of that will now be down to him.

“He has to work his backside off. Griffiths has to be careful. Celtic spent a lot of money on Patryk Klimala and at some point he will get opportunities.

“There is Vakoun Bayo there as well. If there are doubts about the fitness of Griffiths though, Lennon will be thinking about buying a striker.”

Parkhead legend Sutton has hailed Griffiths for overcoming his issues in the past to play a starring role in the title run-in last term.

The striker had a mixed time at Wolves between 2011 and 2014, which saw him plunder a few goals in League One.

Griffiths did spend much of his time while under contract at Wolves away from Molineux, though – he was on loan at Hibernian on two occasions.

He went on to be a success at Celtic, but former Wolves boss Kenny Jackett never regretted the sale.

He explained at the time: “There is some frustration on the player that he looked at the very start, but over months – it wasn’t a short period – you could tell that perhaps his heart was elsewhere.

“It just wasn’t working out really over the course of the last few months and it seemed to me then that the best thing to do would be to let him go back to Scotland and try to get the best price that we could.

“We got a very good price. Then we moved on with Nouha Dicko.

“Sometimes it is a shame that it doesn’t work out because the player he looked in the first month or two was an excellent one. Playing to his potential he is fantastic.

“After that you have to get to reality pretty quickly and if they are not going to do it for you, or for that club, and there’s many reasons why one person doesn’t necessarily settle at one club and does at another.

“But as soon as you make your mind up and it is apparent that it is not going to work out then the best thing you can do is get the best price for him and move on.

“Football clubs can’t ever get focused just on one player, however good he is. It is about a winning team.

“There was the family issue, the pull of Celtic for a Scottish lad, and those factors contributed.

“In the end I am confident we have done the best thing for our club and then it really just becomes about the next player coming in. You need to get that one right.

“Players move on, good ones too. It happens at every club. A big part of it the standard of the people coming in.”

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