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Cool Deila keeps focus and laughs off Malmo criticism

By Roninie Esplin

Published 22/08/2015

Celtic manager Ronny Deila
Celtic manager Ronny Deila

Ronny Deila refused to get drawn into a war of words with Malmo keeper Johan Wiland after he accused Celtic of acting like "pigs" and children in their Champions League play-off tie.

The Hoops boss has also refuted the claim of the Swedish club's manager, Age Hareide, that the Scottish champions "do not have the legs for 90 minutes".

Wiland made the comments after Malmo were beaten 3-2 by Celtic in the first-leg of their play-off at Parkhead on Wednesday night.

The 34-year-old shot-stopper said: "They are pigs, everybody, that's it."

Celtic striker Leigh Griffiths netted two goals but did not impress Wiland, who said: "Griffiths behaves like a child."

Celtic manager Deila revealed that the hamstring injury Mikael Lustig picked up during the game was not as serious as first thought which leaves him with a chance for the return game in Malmo next Tuesday night.

However, ahead of the trip to Dundee United in the Ladbrokes Premiership today, Deila was not keen to respond to the "pigs" comment which Wiland has subsequently tried to soften.

"We can't go to that level, that is not Celtic," said the Norwegian. "It is up to them to say whatever they want.

"I watched the game one more time and I didn't see any trouble.

"It was a fair game and as far as I remember we won 3-2. That was a result that we are happy with and we have a good opportunity to go through in Malmo."

Deila, with some humour, shrugged off Hareide's fitness analysis and reminded his fellow Norwegian that Celtic had won the first-leg.

The former Stromsgodset boss said: "It is not anything new for him. It is up to him what he says.

"He is a funny guy, this is funny. I have seen it before and I also have to say that I don't think we lost the game.

"I don't see the tiredness. I don't think we seemed tired against Qarabag (in the previous round). Every game has different things in it."

Winger Gary Mackay-Steven, who returns to his former club today, admits the comments coming out of the Malmo camp caused him to raise his eyebrows.

He said: "They are possibly trying to get a reaction but I don't think it will work. We'll just keep quiet and do our talking on the park."

Deila is looking for a win at Tannadice to take to Sweden next week.

He said: "We want to win, that is important. Dundee United is always a tough place to go and we have to be really prepared for the game but we will be ready."

Belfast Telegraph

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