Hibernian 0-0 Morton: Neil Lennon and Jim Duffy sent to the stands in stalemate
By Allan Valente
Last Updated: 30/03/17 9:51am
Neil Lennon and Jim Duffy were sent to the stands following angry scenes as Hibernian and Greenock Morton played out a 0-0 draw at Easter Road in the Scottish Championship.
The hosts maintained their 10-point lead at the top of the table after the goalless stalemate, while Morton moved above Falkirk into second spot with the point.
Both teams finished the game with 10 men after Darren McGregor and Morton's Kudus Oyenuga were red-carded following a flare-up in injury time.
Oyenuga was dismissed for a tackle on Jordan Forster, which took place near the dugouts, before McGregor was sent off for violent conduct as the incident sparked chaotic scenes involving both managers and benches.
Lennon and Duffy were involved in an angry exchange in the commotion that followed, with referee Nick Walsh sending them both to the stands for the remainder of the game.
Lennon said after the game: "The guy tried to break my player's leg, then Darren McGregor goes over to him - and he feigns a headbutt, holding his face when Darren made no contact.
"The next thing I've got the Morton manager asking for a square go - fair enough, I won't back down, with their assistant manager, and their players coming at me.
"But it'll be 'bad old Lenny, it's Lenny's fault.' Rubbish! I reacted in the way any manager would. It was disgraceful and the Morton boy's behaviour was embarrassing.
"He tried to break my player's leg then got my captain sent off in an act of cowardice. I have to take that? No, sorry! No wonder I was angry.
"I'm not having that. He [Duffy] has come all the way from his technical area to mine. I didn't do anything but shout at his player, which I had every right to do. He would do the exact same thing."
Duffy, who admitted the initial challenge was poor, added: "It was a poor challenge from Kudus. It was dangerous, it was reckless, and I think the referee would have dealt with it.
"He would have probably given a red card but unfortunately their bench reacted then our bench reacted - including myself. One or two things were said. It was a bit of a melee then the referee sent us both to the stands.
"It's something new to me. I've been in football a long time and I've never been sent to the stand before tonight.
"It's my first time but it's always good to lose your virginity, eventually. But there were no punches thrown. If I throw a punch you would know about it."
Before that, Hibs, unbeaten at home in the league since September, had numerous chances to break the deadlock, with John McGinn striking the post early on.
Brian Graham later went close with a header before Jason Cummings and McGregor were denied by goalkeeper Derek Gaston, while Morton's main threat came via a long-range effort from Ross Forbes.
Hibernian have six games remaining as they look to win promotion back to the top flight after a three-season absence, while second-placed Morton have a game in hand.
The two teams are due to meet again on April 8 at Cappielow.