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Saturday, January 1, 2011
Lennon happy at the top

Neil Lennon insists he would rather be in Celtic's position than Rangers' going into Sunday`s Old Firm derby at Ibrox.

Ljungberg ready to go

Defending champions Rangers won the first battle between the teams 3-1 at Parkhead in October but Lennon takes his troops to Govan for the re-match with a one-point lead at the top of the league - albeit having played two games more.

Lennon, who is contemplating giving new signing Freddie Ljungberg his debut, is happy enough with the situation.

"I would rather be top," Lennon said. "You still have to win your games in hand and, as you have seen this season, there are no guarantees of that, but we don't want to drop too many points on Rangers because they've got games in hand

"It is important that we put in a strong performance and take something from the game. We are not going there negative in any shape or form. We are going there to win.

"In the last Old Firm game we shot ourselves in the foot and that can't happen again on Sunday. We will talk about that in the next couple of days and look at footage of that game and others to see where we can exploit them."

Celtic go in to the match - which marks the 40th anniversary of the Ibrox Disaster which saw 66 people die in a crush on stairway 13 at the stadium following an Old Firm game - on the back of two home wins in the SPL after three drawn games at Parkhead.

Lennon praised his side for getting back on track but says he does not have the personnel to set out a team to play for the draw which would see them maintain their advantage at the top of the table.

"We are not going there to defend for 90 minutes because I don't think we can do it that way," he said. "I don't think we have the players to see that though, but we are looking at the bodies we have and get a shape or formation that will suit us.

"I think the performances have been good, in the main. I think we have had some unnecessary criticism because we are not hammering teams although we are creating the chances.

"It can get a little bit anxious in the last five or ten minutes when you are not home and hosed and that can be the case in any game.

"When we drew the three games at home it was important to win the next one and we did that against St Johnstone and we did it again against Motherwell and it should have been a game that we won more comfortably.

"But I am looking forward to this game."




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