Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 24 September 2014

Celtic boss Neil Lennon on Red alert for Cliftonville clash

16/7/13. Pacemaker Press Belfast. Manager Neil Lennon at Solitude alongside nine year old Jay Betty from Lurgan, Lennon's home town for this evenings training session ahead of the Champions League qualifier between Clistonville and Celtic tomorrow evening. Picture Charles McQuillan/Pacemaker.
16/7/13. Pacemaker Press Belfast. Manager Neil Lennon at Solitude alongside nine year old Jay Betty from Lurgan, Lennon's home town for this evenings training session ahead of the Champions League qualifier between Clistonville and Celtic tomorrow evening. Picture Charles McQuillan/Pacemaker.
Pacemaker Press Belfast 15-07-2013: Cliftonville FC sell around 500 tickets at Sean Graham's on King Street Belfast on Tuesday morning for their eagerly-awaited Champions League match against Celtic at Solitude. The tickets have become available because Celtic returned some of their allocation for Wednesday's game.
Picture By: Arthur Allison.
Pacemaker Press Belfast 15-07-2013: Cliftonville FC sell around 500 tickets at Sean Graham's on King Street Belfast on Tuesday morning for their eagerly-awaited Champions League match against Celtic at Solitude. The tickets have become available because Celtic returned some of their allocation for Wednesday's game. Picture By: Arthur Allison.
?Press Eye Ltd Northern Ireland - 16th July 2013
Mandatory Credit - Picture by Darren Kidd /Presseye.com

 Champions League, Cliftonville v Celtic.
Celtic training ahead of Wednesday nights Champions League 2nd Qual, 1st Leg game against Cliftonville.

 Jay Beatty 9 from Lurgan
?Press Eye Ltd Northern Ireland - 16th July 2013 Mandatory Credit - Picture by Darren Kidd /Presseye.com Champions League, Cliftonville v Celtic. Celtic training ahead of Wednesday nights Champions League 2nd Qual, 1st Leg game against Cliftonville. Jay Beatty 9 from Lurgan

CELTIC manager Neil Lennon has warned his team that their Champions League ambitions will be put to the test tonight in 'a dangerous game' against Cliftonville at Solitude.

Back home in Northern Ireland, Lennon has made it abundantly clear just how important it is to him and the club that Celtic once again qualify for the group stages of Europe's premier competition as they did last season, when they famously defeated Barcelona.

Lennon's men need to win three ties to have a chance to face the likes of Barca, Manchester United and Bayern Munich which would bring millions of pounds in revenue and prestige that the SPL, especially without Rangers, cannot compete with. The first obstacle in Celtic's path is Cliftonville, who host the Hoops this evening in the first leg of a Champions League qualifier (7.45pm) with the return at Parkhead next week.

"We are here to be professional," said the Lurgan native, who won 40 caps for Northern Ireland. "Yes, there is a very good relationship between Celtic and Cliftonville but this is the Champions League which is very important to us, the club, our players and their development. Once the first whistle blows we'll be trying to win the game as best we can.

"It's a dangerous game. This is a booby-trap of a game, so we have to be really at it in how we start the game."

Reds boss Tommy Breslin said: "I feel that any time we go out to play we can beat any team at any time and that's the same attitude we will send the players out with."

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