No SFA punishment for Hibs boss Neil Lennon over Ibrox gesture V Rangers as club expect new John McGinn bids

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HIBS manager Neil Lennon will not be punished by the Scottish FA for his touchline conduct at Ibrox, it has emerged.

The Easter Road boss sparked controversy with his celebration of Hibs’ equaliser during last month’s 3-2 victory over Rangers.

One Light Blues fans’ group called for police intervention and accused Lennon of ‘a clear attempt to incite trouble’ after he cupped his ears and made an underarm gesture towards the main stand.

The furore even led to the former Celtic player and manager being the subject of alleged death threats.

The SFA’s investigation of events at the game was not time-sensitive and was overtaken by a busy period for compliance officer Tony McGlennan and the judicial panel dealing with ‘fast-track’ red-card appeals.

However, it is now understood that no action has been taken against Lennon, who has a suspended two-game ban hanging over him following a bust-up with Morton manager Jim Duffy last season.

Meanwhile, Lennon admits Hibs are already bracing themselves for further bids for star midfielder John McGinn in the January transfer window.

The Easter Road manager was thrilled the club managed to hold on to the Scotland internationalist after he was targeted by former Rangers boss Mark Warburton at Nottingham Forest last month.

An initial bid of £750,000 was dismissed as being ‘laughable’ but Lennon, who rates the player at £5 million, has confessed two further offers got closer to Hibs’ seven-figure valuation.

OUTSTANDING

McGinn was a stand-out performer in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park after returning from earning his fourth cap for his country in the win over Lithuania.

And Lennon accepts the 22-year-old, who Hibs have indicated they would like to sign a new contract, is only going to attract more offers with his impressive displays.

He said: “The way he’s playing, we’ll be getting more bids for him in January, for sure.

“He was outstanding [on Saturday], his all-round game was superb.

“It’s difficult for a club to hold on to star players at this level.

“But we’re in a healthy position, we were delighted we were able to rebuff the offers coming in.”

Speaking at the Edinburgh Helping Hands Festival of Football, which provides free football coaching for youngsters in the capital, Lennon told Sky Sports: “If anyone wants John, there’s a price to pay; every player has a valuation.

“But it’s not affecting him, on Saturday’s going anyway. I was absolutely delighted with his performance, as well as many others.”

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