Lennon comments on Celtic's new transfer policy, discusses competing with Sheffield Wednesday

Celtic U-20s

Neil Lennon hopes Celtic's new transfer policy can take them back to the Champions League.

Former Celtic boss Neil Lennon has acknowledged the club's desire to bring in more Scottish players during an interview with The Scottish Sun - and knows how hard it is for the Bhoys to compete with the likes of Sheffield Wednesday.

Lennon, who left Celtic last summer, has watched his successor Ronny Deila fail to reach the Champions League group stage two years in a row now, bringing questions over his reign at Celtic Park.

Deila is working under tough conditions given the lack of money he has spent on reinforcements on his squad, and Lennon has noticed the change in policy.

In 2015, Celtic have snapped up Gary Mackay-Steven, Stuart Armstrong, Scott Allan and Ryan Christie - all young, talented Scottish players.

With rising prices elsewhere, Celtic are currently trying to build a homegrown squad of Scottish players rather than splash out for expensive foreign players - even though they did bring in Croatian defender Jozo Simunovic from Dinamo Zagreb as Virgil van Dijk's replacement on deadline day last week.

Now, former manager Lennon has told The Scottish Sun that it's difficult for Celtic to even compete with the likes of Sheffield Wednesday right now, despite their status in the Championship, and hopes that Celtic's new transfer policy can bring them back to Champions League football in the near future.

"You can see Celtic are trying now to buy in younger Scottish players and develop them. Hopefully in a couple of years they can compete at that level again," said Lennon. "They have spent some money. They spent a few quid on the Croatian lad Jozo Simunovic they’ve brought in."

"But it’s difficult. There is a lot of money swirling around England. There are new owners coming into clubs — Sheffield Wednesday have new owners and they are offering £10million for Ross McCormack. So for Celtic to compete even against that is very difficult," he added.

With the up-and-coming Scottish players such as Mackay-Steven, Armstrong, Allan and Christie along with experienced heads like Scott Brown, Craig Gordon and Kris Commons, Celtic are certainly building a Scottish team for now and the future - and Deila will hope that he has the right mix for success not only domestically but also in Europe.

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