After Nicola Sturgeon raises questions, Neil Lennon defends Celtic’s trip to Dubai


After Nicola Sturgeon said that the club had questions to answer, Celtic manager Neil Lennon defended his side’s Dubai ride. The minister claims that some pictures she has seen from the training camp of Celtic show that the squad does not comply with the guidelines for social isolation.

Celtic insisted on Monday that after the timing of their outing was criticized, they had obtained permission from the Scottish government for their mid-season trip, two days before Scotland was sealed off because of already strict restrictions. Travel, even inside Scotland, is only permitted for “essential reasons” and on Monday, the Scottish government asked the Scottish Football Association to investigate. Hard work continues 0#CelticFC Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) January 5, 2021Speaking at her media briefing on Tuesday, Sturgeon said, “As I understand it, the Scottish Government gave some advice to the SFA last November on the rules around elite training camps. The world around the pandemic has changed quite a bit since November. “It’s not our job to rubber stamp or rubber stamp. We’re setting rules. The rules are – and may have to change given the changing nature of the pandemic – that if that is necessary in the context of their preparation for competitions, elite athletes may go abroad for training camps. “The rules are – and they may have to change given the changing nature of the pandemic – that elite athletes can go abroad for training camps if that’s important in the context of their training for competitions. “are they traveling in a training camp? ‘In the future, if things change, it will not be necessary. “But that’s not really the question. I’ve also seen some photos – and I can only comment on what I’ve seen, I don’t know all the circumstances – that in my mind raise the question of whether all the rules that elite players in their bubble have to abide by in terms of social distancing are being adhered to. “Sturgeon added that their privileges should not be “abuse” by sports teams. Day 2 of training in “As the club said yesterday, the camp was arranged some time ago, with the full consultation of the soccer authorities and with the approval of the Scottish government,” he said on the official website of the club. “We obviously understand that we are in very unique and difficult times and there are now even stronger restrictions at home, but in conjunction with the Joint Response Group of Scottish Football, the camp is risk assessed and arranged. “We have placed in place all the necessary procedures and have run the camp because we see the sporting benefit in it and hope it will do for us what it has done in the past. And this is how the rest of the week will continue: very tough, but fruitful and critical sessions to prepare us for the second half of the season. Glasgow coach Kenny Murray (Lynne Cameron/PA) Glasgow Warriors assistant coach Kenny Murray, meanwhile, is planning for the cross-border games to begin after Friday’s Guinness PRO14 game against Edinburgh. This month, both Scottish clubs have to travel to France for the Heineken Champions Cup and also host English opposition. And then there’s going to be a break for a couple of weeks, and then we’re going to play PRO14 again. It’s nice to be able to proceed. On Monday, the European Professional Club Rugby Federation held talks with the federations, more details is expected soon, but it was reported that no club intends not to play its games.


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