Thursday 23 January 2020

Lennon wants to break Italian hoodoo

Neil Lennon. Photo: Getty Images
Neil Lennon. Photo: Getty Images

Neil Lennon wants Celtic to end an unwanted record when they take on Lazio in Rome tonight.

The Hoops have not won in 12 trips to Italy, with three draws and nine defeats ahead of their Europa League clash at the Stadio Olimpico.

The Scottish champions beat Lazio 2-1 at Parkhead last month and are top of Group E with seven points from three fixtures.

The Northern Irishman said: "Realistically it is going to be very difficult to win here. Records are there to be broken.

"We are going to have to play very well and take our chances, if and when they should arise.

"We know we probably won't dominate possession the way we would do normally in home games and we are going to have to show a huge amount of concentration and quality.

"In the context of the group it is such an important game.

"It is my first time in Rome taking a team so it is a game we are very excited about and very motivated for."

Asked if the win against Lazio had given him confidence for the return match, the former Celtic midfielder said: "It was a classic game. Both teams played really well.

"We were winners on the night but we know how difficult the game is going to be.

"Lazio's form of late has been really good. They had another great victory in the San Siro (against AC Milan) on Sunday so we are under no illusions how big the job is, to come here and try to get a result."

Meanwhile Rangers have an almost clean bill of health for their Europa League clash against Porto at Ibrox tonight.

Only winger Jordan Jones (knee) is out injured.

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