Scott Brown treated like a criminal claims Celtic boss Neil Lennon after Barcelona red card

Celtic captain was sent off for kicking out at Brazilian Neymar in their 1-0 Champions League defeat

Celtic manager Neil Lennon claims his skipper Scott Brown has been treated like a “criminal” after his Champions League red card.

The Scotland midfielder was dismissed for aiming a kick at Barcelona star Neymar in Tuesday night's Parkhead clash.

Lennon believes the reaction to that incident has verged on the hysterical - yet claims there has been little public outcry after pictures emerged online of an unnamed individual holding a knife to a frozen television image of the Hoops manager.

Now Lennon, who has previously been targeted by fake bombs sent to him in the post as well as a street attack which left him unconscious, has called for a more restrained reaction to Brown's dismissal.

When asked if Brown had been hurt by the backlash, Lennon told several newspapers: "You would do, wouldn't you? You are treated like a criminal sometimes.

"I mean there's a guy in the paper today holding a knife to a picture of me on a frozen TV screen but that is sort of laughed off, whereas Scott does something on the pitch and is treated far more harshly than other people are. You have to have a sense of perspective on this.

"It is upsetting for my family more than anything else. It doesn't affect me all that much but what is concerning is the mindset of some people.

"Whether it's innocent or they think it's funny, for me it is disturbing. You like to think those days have gone but obviously not. I'll leave it to the proper authorities to deal with it. It has been getting better recently. For the last couple of years I have been free to get on with my life and on with my job.

"But some people think it's a bit of harmless fun. If it is done in the privacy of the home fine, but why put it on a public forum?"

PA

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