|Off target Celtic called lazy, insipid
Celtic manager Neil Lennon labelled his players lazy after the runaway league leaders fell to their first Scottish Premier League defeat of 2013.
The Hoops went down to a shock 2-1 at the hands of Motherwell that moved the Fir Park side up to second place in the table, AFP reports.
Lennon was fuming with his side's performance and questioned whether complacency had crept into his side due to their massive 19-point advantage at the top of the SPL.
“In some quarters it looked like that and that's what I'm not happy with,'' the Celtic manager said.
``I was very disappointed with us attacking-wise in the first half. There was a lack of desire and a lack of hunger. I thought (James) Forrest, to be fair, was magnificent the whole game and the one stand-out in the team.
“I thought [Victor] Wanyama and [Thomas] Rogne also had a decent game but the rest of them fell way short of the standard required of them.
“I was expecting to come here and win the game and I'm bitterly disappointed that we haven't.’’
With Saturday's Scottish Cup quarter-final in mind Lennon had made several changes to his side as he handed starting positions to several fringe players in the squad, including Australian international Tom Rogic.
Motherwell had handed a first starting slot to James McFadden, in his second spell with the club, but it was Nicky Law who inspired the Fir Park side as he set up Chris Humphrey for the opener in the 31st minute.
It took Celtic an hour to have a shot on target but they found themselves level in the 63rd minute when Georgios Samaras, who was returning from a long injury lay-off, headed past Darren Randolph.
However, Motherwell responded excellently and took the lead for the second time when Law crossed for Michael Higdon to volley high into the net for a 73rd minute winner.
Lennon was angry his squad players hadn't grabbed their opportunity to shine.
“Maybe I need to look at myself and the team selection but I've got other games in mind obviously apart from tonight,'' the Parkhead club's boss said.
“I would like to think they are quality players but they didn't show it tonight. Our attacking play was insipid in the first half. It was lazy and not good enough.
“The second half was marginally better. But we got the goal, a great goal, and then we dropped a clanger again for the second goal.
“We are making life hard for ourselves. They need to know that is not acceptable.
People keep coming to me wanting to play games and saying I should use the squad.
“But if you leave the likes of Joe Ledley and Gary Hooper out it seems to me that we look a little bit short at times and that was the case tonight.
``And when Hooper comes on we just open Motherwell up at will. That gives me some food for thought. At 1-1 I was thinking 'we will go and win this now'. We were comfortable, in control, and another basic error has cost us.
``Needless to say I am not happy with them.''
The win puts Motherwell in pole position to clinch the second Champions League slot in the SPL.
Manager Stuart McCall said he was proud of his players after they bounced back from their 3-0 defeat to Ross County on Saturday.