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Lennon: Rangers unaffected

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Football News

Celtic boss Neil Lennon does not believe the fact Rangers played against Sporting Lisbon on Thursday night will hamper their efforts in Sunday's Old Firm derby at Parkhead.

The hosts are perceived to have the advantage given they go into the game on the back of a free week while their bitter rivals had a Europa League match just three days earlier but Lennon is not sure that extra game will have too much of an effect on tomorrow's clash.

"When I played you just wanted to play games - you didn't have to do much training in between," he said. "Maybe we might be a bit fresher, I don't know. Maybe the extra game will do Rangers the world of good. We will have to wait to see what happens on Sunday."

The game will see Scott Brown and El-Hadji Diouf lock horns again.

Hoops captain Brown and Rangers forward Diouf traded insults during and for several days after the 2-2 Scottish Cup draw at Ibrox earlier this month.

Brown received a yellow card for celebrating in Diouf's face after netting Celtic's second equaliser but went on to describe it as "the best booking I have ever had".

The Senegalese player faces a hostile reception at Parkhead having spat on a Celtic fan while playing there for Liverpool in a UEFA Cup tie in 2003 - a crime that earned him a £5,000 fine at Glasgow Sheriff Court.

Lennon was keen to play down the feud between the two players ahead of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League clash, but he has no problem with a healthy on-field rivalry.

"Every Old Firm game is different," Lennon said. "Both teams have their own personalities and sometimes it can get a bit feisty but there is nothing wrong with that, as long as it doesn't spill into something outrageous.

"Basically you want to keep 11 players on the pitch. Each game has its own personalities. It might be two different players you are talking about after Sunday's game."

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Europa League
European News
Premier League
El-Hadji Diouf
Neil Lennon
Scott Brown
Scott Brown

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