Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 2 October 2014

McGinn relishing Ljungberg challenge at Celtic

Niall McGinn

Niall McGinn would welcome the addition of Freddie Ljungberg to the Celtic squad but is determined it will not be at his expense.

The 33-year-old former Arsenal star checked in at the Parkhead club's Lennoxtown training ground on Monday for a week's trial and impressed manager Neil Lennon and the Celtic players on his first day.

McGinn is a fan of the former Sweden midfielder but will battle hard not to be dislodged by him.

“He's going to be a big addition to the squad if he signs,” the Northern Ireland international said ahead of Celtic’s home game with Motherwell tonight.

“He is a player I looked up to when I was younger and he looked sharp in training.

“He's a versatile player, he can play on either side and play in the hole as well.

“We will have to wait and see if he signs first but I'm sure he has enough experience to do a job for the team.

“But I'm in the team and it's up to me to stay in the team.

“The manager has shown faith in me and so I have to keep working hard and keep doing what I've been doing.”

Ljungberg was joined on trial by 32-year-old Canadian international Dwayne De Rosario who is also looking to impress Lennon with a view to a move from Toronto FC.

McGinn only signed for Celtic two years ago from Derry City but is used to constant personnel changes at the Parkhead club.

“You are playing for a massive club and if the manager brings in players you have to work around that,” he said.

With Rangers' trip to St Johnstone postponed through adverse weather conditions, Celtic can go top of the table with a win over the Steelmen, who lost 4-1 at home to the Light Blues at the weekend.

Lennon, though, refused to take anything for granted, the former Northern Ireland skipper saying: “After a defeat like that I think their players will be playing for pride.

“Motherwell might not have done themselves justice in the last few games so it's always a worry when a team comes off the back of a defeat, how difficult they will be to break down. But we are just looking at our team and how we can keep playing the attacking football we have been playing.”

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