Celtic: Neil Lennon backs Leigh Griffiths over alleged stamp

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Lennon saw 'no malice' in Griffiths incident
Scottish Premiership: Motherwell v Celtic
Venue: Fir Park Date: Wednesday, 5 February Kick-off: 19:45 GMT
Coverage: Live commentary on Radio Scotland and text updates on the BBC Sport website & app

Celtic manager Neil Lennon would have been "bewildered" if Leigh Griffiths had been charged for an alleged stamp on Hamilton Academical's Sam Woods.

The striker stood on Woods' chest in Celtic's 4-1 win, but will not face a Scottish FA notice of complaint after a three-man panel of former referees did not agree it was a red-card offence.

Griffiths was booked for the incident, in which he also pushed Alex Gogic.

"I would be very disappointed, because I saw it at the time," Lennon said.

"I think his leg was trapped and he's trying to get up. I'm not sure how much contact he really made with the player.

"There was no malice in that, there's no intent in that at all, so I would be bewildered if anything came from that.

"What disappointed me was him pushing the player after it. We're big on discipline and I had a quiet word with him about it."

Lennon also confirmed winger Marian Shved has been dropped from Celtic's Europa League squad for the knockout stage.

Right-back Jeremie Frimpong as well as new signings Patryk Klimala and Ismaila Soro have been added before this month's last-32 tie against Copenhagen.

VAR will be used in that tie and Lennon says he has had briefings with head of referee development Crawford Allan and long-serving match official Willie Collum.

Celtic face Motherwell at Fir Park on Wednesday and Lennon praised the "great mentality" and "ruthlessness" of his side, who have won all five games since the winter break to extend their lead at the top of the Scottish Premiership to seven points.

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