Andy Walker blasts Deila after Champions League exit, makes Neil Lennon comparison

Celtic Champions League

Sky Sports pundit Andy Walker is far from impressed with Ronny Deila.

Former Celtic striker Andy Walker has told Sky Sports that manager Ronny Deila has 'fallen short' after the club's dismal Champions League exit.

The Bhoys crashed out of the Champions League on Tuesday night, losing 2-0 away at Malmo following a 3-2 win in the first leg, meaning Celtic were dumped out 4-3 on aggregate.

The performance in Sweden was far from Celtic's best, with many of the team's star players looking like a shadow of their normal selves, including Craig Gordon, Virgil van Dijk and Stefan Johansen.

That result means that Celtic now have to settle for a Europa League campaign for the second year in a row, with Deila once again failing to provide Champions League football for Celtic following last year's exit.

Celtic have now missed out on the huge TV revenues that come from playing in the Champions League, and one former Bhoys player is far from happy.

Pundit Andy Walker, who played for Celtic as a striker, told Sky Sports that Deila has disappointed again, and went as far to say that hasn't been able to achieve what his predecessor Neil Lennon did during his time in charge at Celtic Park.

"There's too much talk of progress at Celtic under Ronny Deila. Any manager in Scottish football and the Premiership could come up with the results Deila has over the last 14 months," said Walker. "With that budget, the players they have and all the facilities, everyone in the Premiership could deliver the title and odd cup. Deila has fallen short here."

"They need to come up with a game plan that will get them through difficult tasks," he said. "Neil Lennon was criticised by Deila for not having a fit team and allowing them to eat chips all the time, but his team managed to get through to the Champions League."

"Above all else, Deila needs a notable victory. I think they'll win the title again this season; they are by far the best side in Scotland. But he's a bit too rigid and clearly there's a learning curve for him and the players because it's a huge disappointment here," he added.

Lennon regularly took Celtic to the Champions League, whilst Deila has so far failed to do that - which will no doubt be a concern to the Bhoys hierarchy, just over a year into the Norwegian's spell as manager.

Deila is now under heavy pressure from Celtic fans, and winning the Scottish Premiership may no longer be enough to keep him on side with Bhoys supporters - meaning a strong Europa League campaign is a necessity this season.

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