LISBON Lion Jim Craig believes the new Celtic manager must make delivering success in Europe a priority – and backed Neil Lennon to excel on the continent if he is kept on at Parkhead.

The Glasgow club can become the first in the history of Scottish football to complete a treble treble if they beat Hearts in the William Hill Scottish Cup at Hampden on Saturday.

Craig, who helped Jock Stein’s side complete a clean sweep of domestic trophies in both 1967 and 1969, believes it will be a fine achievement if they succeed.

But the man who helped Celtic to beat Inter Milan and become the first British club to lift the European Cup in Lisbon 52 years ago would like to see his old club make more of an impression in the Champions League and the Europa League in future.

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And he admitted he would have faith in Lennon, who led Celtic into the knockout rounds of Europe’s premier club competition back in 2012, being able to do that if his services are retained.

“A treble treble is a great feat, but there is nothing bigger than a European Cup or a Champions League success,” he said. “A criticism you could have of this team is that, in European terms, they have been disappointing.

“That has to change. That is the thing this manager, whoever it is, whoever comes in, has to do. He has to enjoy success in Europe.

“We got a lot of praise for winning, but the year before we reached the semi-final of the Cup Winners’ Cup, in ’69 we were in the quarter-final of the European Cup, in ’70 we reached the final of the European Cup, in ’72 we reached the semi-final of the European Cup and in ’74 we got to the semi-final of the European Cup. It was there all the time. There was a progression of success.

 “That is what the current team have to aim for. It is fine to have domestic success and it keeps the fans happy, but if you really want to stamp your authority you have to do well in the Champions League.”

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Lennon helped Celtic get through the group stages of that tournament during his first spell in charge thanks, in part, to a famous victory over Barcelona.

Speaking at a promotional event for the Guinness PRO14 rugby final, Craig added: “If he can do it once he can do it again. He seems to me to be a guy you could allow to continue with what he has done so far.”