Neil Lennon’s champagne dreams with a Kool-Aid budget

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Sitting there in the dugout was hard enough. He’d rather be running with his players, doing anything but sitting. So Neil Lennon got up. But standing wasn’t helpful, either.  “I was up and down and up and down,” he told reporters. “I was trying to stay calm, but inside my stomach was churning.”

He was living the final defining moments and seconds of his managerial career, and they were horrible. The type of minutes you want to hasten, not savour. Five minutes of stoppage time stood in the way of his Celtic — and it is increasingly becoming his, the imprint of his success becoming more and more indelible in this most historical year, its 125th, for the club, and the next round of the Champions League.

So Lennon chewed his gum. “It’s taking a pounding,” said one commentator. But he needn’t have worried. Georgios Samaras did such a good job possessing the ball – hording it, really, as he had all game, in the farthest corner of the field that time ticked off harmlessly. And then the whistle blew. Lennon threw his arms in the air, but, being one of the most effusive managers in the game, he did not bellow or run rampantly or bawl. He was stoic.

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Barack Obama wished the US squad good luck at the White House, and we talked to Maurice Edu about it!

By Eric Beard, writing from Boston

Maurice Edu said he “had never met this President before” because he met George W. Bush during his days playing college soccer with Maryland. This time around, however, “Mo” seemed a little more excited about President Obama. We were able to chat with the Glasgow Rangers & US Men’s National Team midfielder about what this experience means to him. We also talked to him about what his role is for the US Men’s National Team. The interview is above, and the picture and video of the US squad’s trip to the White House is below. Former President Bill Clinton and current Vice-President Joe Biden joined Obama in wishing the squad good luck. Clinton is a member of the United States 2018/2022 World Cup Bid committee, and was President back in 1994 when the US hosted the World Cup.

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Malicious Monday: Kyle Lafferty gives Rangers’ mascot, Broxi Bear, a proper Scottish hug

After the Glasgow Rangers were officially deemed the champions of the Scottish Premier League, there were joyous celebrations to follow among Rangers’ supporters. The players joined in as well, and so did Rangers’ mascot, Broxi Bear. As Mr. Bear was pumping up the crowd, Rangers striker Kyle Lafferty had so much energy/testosterone running through him that decided to go ahead and tackle the mascot. Of course, this is only considered a nice little hug in Scotland. Well in lad… And congrats to Rangers fans on their 53rd SPL title. [found via our friend Brooks over at Dirty Tackle]

Linking Up: Egyptian guy-love, BMWs blowing-up, and the worst moves of the January transfer window

Futbolita unveils Egypt’s bromance between Mohamed Zidan and El Hadary. Even Zidan’s hair is in love.

Scotland isn’t attracting too many foreigners. Glasgow Rangers midfielder DaMarcus Beasley’s BMW was set on fire outside of his house. [Never Captain Nicky Butt]

Fisted Away flips everything upside-down with their hilarious piece entitled, “Drugs Tests Positive for traces of Adrian Mutu”.

Uh oh.. Did JT get with Hilario’s wife? Nothing but bad news coming out of Stamford Bridge at the moment. They even tied Hull. Ouch. [In the Stands]

Top four worst transfer window moves. Yes, that includes Robbie Keane. [Off the Post]

A proper shirt for all Celtic fans. Here’s to Keanoooo. [Who Are Ya Designs]

Arsenal better and more fortunate as they defeat Celtic 2-0 in Glasgow

A nice deflection along with a Gary Caldwell own goal was enough to help Arsenal get a deserved away victory at Parkhead in Glasgow in the Champions League play-off.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger decided to go with the exact same Starting XI that dismantled Everton 6-1 on Saturday at Goodison Park in the Premier League.

Tony Mobray, on the other hand, decided to drastically alter his squad that won comfortably beating Aberdeen 3-1 on Saturday.

Arsenal were able to get on the mark just before the stroke of halftime thanks to Cesc Fabregas’ well-struck free kick was inadvertently diverted by William Gallas into Artur Boruc’s net.

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