NEIL LENNON insisted Europa League rivals Asteras Triplos’ so-called “dirty tricks” will not derail Hibs in Greece tonight.

The Easter Road boss believes a combination of travel and hotel chaos may not be a coincidence as his side prepare to defend a 3-2 lead.

After having a charter flight cancelled at short notice due to crew sickness, the club were forced to book a smaller plane to fly from Edinburgh which left 50 fans unable to travel.

That inconvenience was compounded by the discovery their hotel booking in Tripoli had been also been cancelled and new accommodation had to be sourced. That resulted in backroom staff being separated from the players.

There was a power cut at the team hotel to contend with, but Lennon said: “Our hotel got cancelled on us. You can make your own assumptions from that. It meant more work for the travel operator. The flight being cancelled was a bit dubious, I won’t use it as an excuse, but it hasn’t been ideal.

“We had to change hotels, which wasn’t ideal, either. We had it booked and it was cancelled over the weekend.

“Some of my staff are in a different hotel, but the core group and the players are in the same hotel.”

On the actual game, Lennon added: “We’ll need to be more aggressive than we were in first 45 minutes in Edinburgh.

“We played very well in second-half, but the tie is very much in the balance.

“We will be aggressive because the way the team is set up, it’s to attack and score goals and we feel we must score in the tie.

“The object is to make sure we succeed.”


About Author


Acclaimed author Alex Gordon wrote the biography of Scotland international legend Denis Law, entitled 'King and Country'. He is a former columnist with World Soccer magazine and Scottish correspondent of respected European journal L'Equipe.

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