Lennon playing down Old Firm derby

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Celtic manager Neil Lennon has seen no sign of nerves among his players ahead of Sunday's Old Firm derby - partly because he has waited until Friday to mention their opponents.

Celtic and Rangers meet on the fourth of seven occasions this season when they battle for the edge in a tight Clydesdale Bank Premier League title race on Sunday. The Parkhead side prepare to host their rivals while sitting five points ahead but having played two games more.

Lennon has been keen to keep the week in training as low key as possible, and told the Huddle Online: "(Nerves) have not been evident so far and we try to play down the fact it's an Old Firm game."

He added: "We don't really mention the opposition until the day before the game. We just try to keep it as normal as possible. We do that because it's just another league game, the outcome is three points.

"It's important we keep the run going no matter who we are playing and it just happens to be Rangers this weekend."

Celtic go into the game as favourites after fighting back impressively to draw 2-2 at Ibrox with 10 men earlier this month in the Scottish Cup.

But Lennon will not read too much into that game ahead of their latest meeting following one defeat and one victory in their earlier encounters this term.

"Every Old Firm game is different," he said. "Regardless of what happened at Ibrox, this will be a different game.

"We will take the positives from it but not be kidded on about it.

"They are a good team, they are the champions. They are very difficult to beat and have a good mentality about them as well."

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Neil Lennon

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