Just how far can a manager go in criticising his own players in public? It is generally seen as taboo in some quarters to have a go at your players publicly.

But this past week, two of our highest profile gaffers have lambasted their own team for all and sundry to pore over. Brendan Rodgers was first up when he described his players' abject display against Paris Saint-Germain as them performing like an under 12 team. Well, just for good measure Neil Lennon went one step further, or effectively four years further, in labelling his Hibs team as performing like an under 8s team at the weekend when they tossed away a two-goal lead at home to Motherwell.

They were, of course, describing the naivety in which their own players performed individually and collectively in those games.

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However, Lennon has certainly not been shy in calling his players out in public over poor displays in his short tenure in charge at Hibs. He has in general got a positive reaction in the next game and his honesty has gone down well with the punters. It has been refreshing.

But how many times can you go to that particular well before it dries up and stops having the same effect?

Rodgers, on the other hand, really has had little cause to do the same as his Celtic team have dismantled all before them domestically. Crucially, Rodgers didn't single out a specific section of his team or any one individual after seeing his side thrashed by PSG.

Players are selfish creatures so unless you are named and shamed as such, you can turn a blind eye or think to yourself he wasn't talking about me. A trick of the mind so to speak. Or an over-inflated ego. Lennon specifically dug out his back four and goalkeeper. That can be a dangerous game. Some players can be delicate flowers with thin skins so managers need to tread carefully.

Man-management is everything in such an ego-driven sport as football and maybe it could be more prudent to massage that ego with a quiet word. Sometimes you might get a better reaction speaking to the individual privately. You must keep the dressing room onside and picking and choosing when to use the carrot and the stick is crucial. It's all well and good doing it in the confines and sanctuary of the dressing room but when that type of stinging criticism is blasted out in full view of the country and you are pinpointed, it can be an entirely different story.

I have seen at first hand how players can react to being criticised in such a public manner.

Personally, I was on the end of some real tongue lashings by managers in the dressing room after games due to poor performances or lack of discipline, but I would always prefer that to being called out in public. After stupidly getting myself sent off for Dundee in the last minute of a crucial Dundee derby for kicking out at Barry Robson, Jim Duffy absolutely destroyed me in front of all the players and staff. He accused me, in no uncertain terms, of being spineless and a coward who took the easy way out and let the rest of my team-mates down.

"How could I look them and him in the eye after shafting them like that?" I was a disgrace. It was very strong stuff but totally deserved and I had to take it on the chin. I’d also be getting fined two weeks wages he informed me. But he didn't criticise me in the press and I appreciated that.

On the Monday morning, he brought me into his office and told me he wouldn't be fining me after all. That made me want to run through a brick wall for him. It was the perfect example of man management. But for a shot going an inch the other way a few weeks later, I would have rewarded him and kept Dundee in the SPL, but we won't dwell on that.

Looking at it the other way with the same club when Alan Kernaghan came in as manager at Dundee, it was a disaster from start to finish. After getting off to a poor start in charge, he decided to not only drop some of the experienced players, including myself, and tell them they were surplus to requirements, but publicly criticised us for letting the younger guys down. Now, that might have been true to a certain extent. But you have to keep things like that behind closed doors.

You sit those guys down and tell them you need more out of them whether that be in effort or performance. That just never happened. It immediately divided the dressing room.

A few months later, with the club still toiling and finding himself under pressure to get results, he had to come cap in hand to those same players he had denounced in public to come and dig him out a hole.

By that time, it was too late and unfortunately, he paid for it with his job. Much the same happened at Hibs with Terry Butcher, who despite being a vastly experienced manager, naively informed a host of players that they were not in his plans and wouldn't be getting a contract at the end of the season.

He then had to rely on those same players to burst their backsides for him in a relegation battle. There was only going to be one outcome. He had lost the dressing room.

On a somewhat lighter note, the most withering put down I ever came across in my 18 years in football was delivered by Gerry McCabe who was the assistant manager at Hibs under Bobby Williamson.

|"Cabey" is a well-travelled and respected coach in Scottish football and was brutally honest at times, no more so than after a match that we lost 4-1 away at Livingston. Yannick Zambernardi, our French defender, had a complete nightmare and was badly at fault for a couple of Livi's goals.

After Bobby had given us both barrels he asked Gerry if he had anything to add. Gerry said yes just one thing. He turned to Yannick and quietly said to him that the sooner he realised that good French players of his age didn’t play in Scotland, the better. "If you were any good you would be playing in France." Ouch.

But then, I don't think Zambernardi quite understood Gerry's thick Lanarkshire accent, which was maybe just as well . . .

And another thing. Having watched the big fight between Canelo and Golovkin finishing in a controversial draw, the abject performance of one of the ringside judges in giving the verdict to Canelo by eight rounds has caused outrage around the world. It was a ridiculous decision and calls into question the integrity of boxing. But, there was one man watching that fight with a smile on his face – it has taken the pressure right off Willie Collum for another week . . .