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Ex-Wanderers midfielder Bannan on playing under 'brilliant' Lennon

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Nat Lofthouse
Nat Lofthouse

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Former Wanderers midfielder Barry Bannan says Neil Lennon was “brilliant” to play under during his time at the UniBol.

Lennon brought the Scot to the North West on loan from Crystal Palace in 2014/15, with Chung-Yong Lee heading the opposite way.

Bannan became a regular starter during the second half of the season as the Whites finished 18th in the Championship.

However, Wanderers were unable to land the midfielder on a permanent deal the following summer and he headed to Sheffield Wednesday instead.

"He was brilliant. I looked up to him, he was part of that Martin O'Neill team,” Bannan told Celtic: The Unrestricted View Podcast.

“He'd won trophies as a manager as well, so to work under him was similar to Martin O'Neill really but not as big as that.

"I got on with him really well. He was quite similar to Martin in a way. He kind of took bits from Martin, obviously having him at Leicester and then Celtic. He was good, I liked him."

Bannan impressed for the Owls last season, scoring nine goals and being named in the League One Team of the Season.

The 32-year-old says the closest he came to a move to boyhood club Celtic was when Lennon returned to the hot seat in 2019.

He added: "I think the closest I came was when Rodgers left and when Lennon came in, because I had Lennon at Bolton.

“That was the closest but I was still at Sheffield Wednesday and it just never materialised. There was rumours but nothing really strong enough to go at."

Lennon is currently managing overseas and recently led Omonia Nicosia to victory against Ethnikos Achnas on penalties in the Cypriot Cup final.

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