Hibs have 'mojo' back, says Lennon after 2-0 defeat of Celtic

Hibernian celebrate
Goalscorer Vykintas Slivka (right) celebrates his opener with Stevie Mallan

Hibernian cannot save their best performances "for the big games", says boss Neil Lennon as he praised his players for getting their "mojo" back.

The Easter Road side beat Celtic 2-0 to secure successive wins for the first time since October.

Hibs are two points off the Scottish Premiership's top six after goals by Vykintas Slivka and Florian Kamberi.

"It annoys me because two weeks ago at Kilmarnock we were absolutely pathetic," said Lennon.

"Two weeks later off the back of a great win last week and then a great win today we start looking like the team that we know we can be again.

"It was an outstanding team performance, we were very, very good and we could have won the game by more. The most important thing is it's the three points and it puts us back in the mix for the top six again.

"You can't save your games for the big games, the performances. You've got do it week in, week out. There was a dip, from all of us, really, but we've sort of got our mojo back. Against the best team in the country, I thought we looked every bit a match for them."

The head coach also praised youngsters Oli Shaw, Ryan Porteous and Sean Mackie, who set up Kamberi's goal after replacing Slivka at half-time.

"Oli's had a poor start to the season but he's bounced back really well the last two or three weeks where his contribution's been immense," Lennon told BBC Radio Scotland's Sportsound. "I was delighted with him today.

"Ryan's been outstanding. Very consistent this season. And we had Sean Mackie on in the second so we've got three academy players out there playing against the champions and it didn't phase them. It's a remarkable performance under the circumstances. I'm very, very proud of the team."

Lennon says Slivka is a "major doubt" for Wednesday's home match against Rangers after picking up an injury while being fouled by Celtic captain Scott Brown.

However, he hopes defenders David Gray and Paul Hanlon and forward Martin Boyle might return.

"We know if we win on Wednesday night, we're back in the top six," said Lennon. "Rangers away from home or at home are one of the best teams in the country again so we'll have to try and find that performance again."

'Hibs better all over the pitch' - analysis

Former Hibernian and Celtic midfielder Paul Hartley on Sportsound

The better team won. Hibernian were better all over the pitch - the final third, defensively. They caused Celtic more problems.

Celtic were very sloppy today, they looked sluggish.

They had no energy, really, but you've got to give credit to Hibs in how they performed and the way that Neil set his team up.

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