25.01.2020 19:37 h

Lennon hails 'outstanding' Edouard after double strike

French striker Odsonne Edouard received glowing praise from Celtic manager Neil Lennon after he came off the bench to score a second-half double in the champions' 3-0 win over Ross County on Saturday.

The 22-year-old had been on the bench due to a toe problem but he was sent on for the ineffective Leigh Griffiths and his brace -- both coming in three minutes of each other -- ensured Celtic moved five points clear of bitter rivals Rangers.

Rangers have two games in hand and can move back to just two points off the leaders if they beat bottom side Hearts on Sunday.

Lennon, though, could not praise Edouard highly enough after the French Under-21 striker took his tally for the season to 20.

"He (Edouard) is hugely important," Lennon told BBC Scotland. "He is an outstanding footballer, almost talismanic.

"He is up there with some of the best we've had over the last 20 years."

Lennon, who is seeking his fifth league title in his two spells at the club, said Edouard will hopefully not suffer a reaction and be fit for their next match with St Johnstone on Wednesday.

"It was very reassuring (to have him on the bench) he is a class player," said Lennon.

"You always worry about a toe injury, it was quite tender but he looked fine and fresh and you could see the lift he gave to the team and his second goal was a great goal, a great finish.

"In the context of the season it is a brilliant win," added the 48-year-old Northern Irishman.