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Neil Lennon wary of Celtic’s Caledonian history

Celtic manager Neil Lennon is keen to avoid another cup upset at the hands of Inverness.

In February 2000, the Hoops infamously lost 3-1 at home in a Scottish Cup third-round tie to Caley, then a First Division club, to signal the end of John Barnes' reign at Celtic Park.

In March 2003, Lennon was also in the Celtic team which lost 1-0 at Inverness in the same competition and ahead of their home Co-operative Insurance Cup third-round tie against Terry Butcher's side, the Parkhead boss revealed he would field a strong starting XI to try to avoid a repeat.

“Obviously they have history with us, they had a great result 10 years ago and they turned us over in 2003,” Lennon said.

“It's obviously a different set of circumstances with a different set of players, but Inverness will come and have a go.

“I am just pleased it's a home tie. I won't be diluting the team too much, I will be putting out a pretty strong team.”

Lennon revealed his fondness for the much-maligned cup competition and insists it is even more important in the absence of more European football this season.

“The Co-operative Insurance Cup has been good to me,” he said. “It was my first trophy I won as a Celtic player and my first as the captain. All the competitions are important for us.

“Now we are out of Europe it has become more prominent in our thoughts.”

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