CELTIC chief executive Peter Lawwell has pledged to support manager Neil Lennon as the club pushes for another tilt at the SPL title and the Champions League group stages.
Lawwell hailed the club’s achievements on their 125th anniversary in a season that saw Celtic reach the last-16 of the Champions League - defeating La Liga champions Barcelona along the way - and winning the SPL title.
A league-and-cup double could still be possible with Celtic facing Hibernian in the Scottish Cup final on Sunday 26 May.
Lawwell, aware that Lennon is attracting interest from several English clubs - Everton, Stoke and Leicester rumoured to be among them - has been eager to give Lennon his public backing.
The Celtic chief said: “Neil, his backroom staff and all the players deserve congratulations for their efforts in retaining the league title.
“It was a fantastic atmosphere on Saturday and, once again, our supporters were magnificent. It’s been an important year for the club as we celebrate our 125th anniversary and there have been some great moments along the way.
“Those 48 hours back in November, when we held a special event in St Mary’s to mark our anniversary and then, the following night, beat Barcelona 2-1 in the Champions League will live long in the memory.”
He added: “It’s fitting that in this, our 125th year, we are the Scottish champions and that the league flag continues to fly over Celtic Park.
“I’d like to thank all our supporters for making Saturday a great occasion, and the whole season a memorable one. Our season’s not finished, of course, and we hope to finish with a Scottish Cup victory at Hampden on May 26.”
Celtic will need to negotiate three qualifying rounds to progress to the group stages of the Champions League. They faced HJK Helsinki and Helsingborgs IF in the qualifying rounds last year.
“Even as we look forward to that occasion, the club is already planning for next season. We have a title to defend again, while our aim is to once again bring UEFA Champions League group-stage football to Celtic Park.”