Celtic left-back Kieran Tierney admits he and his teammates were surprised by Brendan Rodgers’ departure as “it all happened overnight”.
The Northern Irishman left to join Leicester City last month, with Neil Lennon replacing him in the dugout in a whirlwind 24 hours.
“Was I surprised? Yeah, because it all happened overnight,” Tierney admitted.
“We woke up in the morning and it was all over the papers and everybody was talking about it. We went up to Lennoxtown and the next thing we know we’ve got a new manager.
“Listen, Brendan gave us so much success and it’s hard the way it’s all happened because players are all supporters of the club as well. We’re fighting for the badge. It’s hard for the players and it’s hard for the fans.
“The most important thing for us all is to get behind the team and the management staff now. That’s what’s going to take us forward and that’s what we need to concentrate on.
“It’s been fun and exciting to work under Neil Lennon so far.
“I’ve not seen him [Rodgers] since. I had a few text messages just after he left but that’s it.
Tierney also revealed that a little help from UFC superstar Conor McGregor helped him get back to full fitness after a hip problem.
“Throughout my injury Conor McGregor was brilliant with me.
“He has a programme he does on the watt bike that helped him get fit and he was giving me tips on that, which was amazing.
“I was doing work on the watt bike with the Celtic physios anyway – that’s what gets you fit through different programmes.
“But I found out his programme and had a look to see if mine was similar.
“I was still doing Celtic’s programme but the little tips from him helped too. He’s my biggest hero outside of football so it was amazing.
“I don’t know how my results compared to his but it was pretty good.
“It was just brilliant to hear from him. When you’re injured you always feel a bit lower than usual because you’re not out on the pitch training with everyone.
“To hear from your hero and get advice from him lifted me that wee bit.”
“We got in touch through social media. He came over to Glasgow for a question and answer session and I got talking to his mates who said he’d love one of my Celtic jerseys.
“I sent him a few over for him and his mates the next thing I know he sent me a message saying thanks, and posted a photo on Instagram.
“Honestly, I couldn’t sleep that night. He posted the picture at 10.50pm and I was sitting there thinking, ‘No way.’ That was me up the full night, and I went buzzing into training.
“I’m a massive fan, particularly the way he talks about positivity. It’s all about mindset and how you react to people doubting you, and how to come back from defeats. Any athlete can relate to him.
“I met him in Belfast two years ago when I was injured and ringside at a UFC event and we got chatting for 15 minutes. I got a signed glove from him and a t-shirt as well so it’s class.”
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