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Ronny Deila's Euro alert as wasteful Celtic draw a blank at Hearts

Celtic 0-0 Hearts

By Ronnie Esplin

Celtic will need to be more effective in front of goal when they take on Fenerbahce on Thursday night according to boss Ronny Deila.

The Norwegian spent a frustrating afternoon at Parkhead on Saturday watching his side create and miss a series of chances in their goalless Ladbrokes Premiership draw against Hearts.

The champions were especially wasteful in the first-half with Kris Commons, Tom Rogic and top scorer Leigh Griffiths all missing opportunities with James Forrest's drive which hit the inside of the post the closest thing to a goal.

Aberdeen's 2-1 defeat at Inverness left Celtic four points behind the league leaders.

The gap might have remained at five had defender Efe Ambrose not sacrificed himself with a 'last man' challenge on Sam Nicholson in stoppage time to earn himself a red card from referee Kevin Clancy.

Celtic resume their Europa League campaign with a home game against the Turkish side - the Hoops drew 2-2 with Ajax in their group opener in Amsterdam earlier in the month - and Deila knows they have to step it up, especially in front of goal.

He said: "We will not be okay (with the same level of performance) because we didn't score a goal.

"So then it is going to be a tough game.

"A lot of things we did will be good enough on Thursday. But we need to be more effective.

"In Europe you get punished harder and you need to punish them when you get the chance."

Aberdeen's defeat at Inverness came on the back of their League Cup third-round exit to Ladbrokes Championship side Hibernian in midweek and suggests the pressure is getting to Derek McInnes' side.

However, despite missing the chance to eat further into the Dons' lead at the top of the table, Forrest, who enjoyed a "good battle" with Jambos right-back Callum Paterson, preferred to concentrate only on Celtic.

The Scotland winger said: "We are just focusing on our own game. We were just disappointed that we didn't get the three points with the amount of chances we created.

"We could have scored a lot of goals if one had gone in but sometimes that is football.

"There is positives there and we will take them out the game

"We just need to get on with it and get the three points in the next games."

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