Celtic boss Neil Lennon knows Leigh Griffiths will say "well, now you need to play me" - but has message for striker
An 80-minute run-out will have done him the world of good, however, as Celtic look to make it three league wins in a row against Hamilton Accies on Boxing Day. Griffiths has now scored in consecutive games after coming on to score in the Scottish Cup final win over Hearts on Sunday. “Leigh will be an asset for us moving forward – if he can stay fit,” said Lennon, who is refusing to let the striker rest on his laurels.
The striker scored a header after 61 minutes before later being replaced by Albian Ajeti. David Turnbull struck the opener in the first-half as Celtic dealt with a spirited if ultimately toothless Ross County, who were under the charge of John Hughes for the first time.
Griffiths partnered Odsonne Edouard in attack in what was only his second start this season. He missed two good opportunities before heading in Ryan Christie’s cross.
“Griff got 80 minutes and scored a great goal - but he should have had a hat-trick,” said Lennon. "Odsonne should have scored too and we missed some chances in the second half to rack up a really good scoreline. But the quality of the chances we made really pleased me. I'd have liked more goals because I think our play deserved that. But there was good intensity and real quality in some of the football.
“We scored two lovely goals. Griff needs to get sharper and he'll say 'well, you need to play me'. I think the more he plays and stays fit he'll be an asset for us going forward.
"The minutes will do Leigh a lot of good and he scored a great header. It was probably the hardest chance of them all. He got better as the game went on, his movement was really good, and he scores great goals.”