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BAUER’S EURO TARGET

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MORITZ BAUER witnessed some memorable European encounters last season – now the on-loan Celtic right-back wants to actually play in them.

The Austrian defender, who has agreed a season-long temporary switch from Championship strugglers Stoke City, has a slight knock, but hopes to be fit for selection for tomorrow night’s Europa League Group E meeting with Cluj at Parkhead.

Bauer is a pal with Swiss international Xherdan Shaqiri who provided tickets for Liverpool’s dramatic comeback against Barcelona at Anfield on the Merseysiders’ march to ultimate success.

The 27-year-old is also a friend of Ajax’s Dusan Tadic and was in Amsterdam when Spurs shocked them with a last-gasp goal to knock them out in a frantic semi-final.

And the attack-minded full-back was also at the Champions League Final when Shaqiri was an unused substitute as Virgil Van Dijk’s outfit claimed a 2-0 triumph over the London side.

He remained on the bench during the opening 1-1 draw against Rennes, but hopes to get the nod this time around.

Bauer, speaking to the Daily Record, said: “To play in Europe is a great thing and I can’t wait to experience a European night at Parkhead, but we also want to be successful domestically.

“I played in the play-off round in the Europa League and Champions League for Grasshoppers – we played Lyon, Fiorentina, Lille and Brugge.

“It would have been great to qualify for the group stage and we were close. I could smell the atmosphere of European nights.

“We have the squad to do well in Europe and we have more variety in the squad with the players we have added.

“There is a lot of balance which helps because we have six games in three weeks, so we will use all the squad.”

Bauer added: “I try to adapt and I enjoy being part of a good group and I’m lucky to speak different languages.

“I can understand the jokes, but the Scottish accent is one I have to get the hang of. Scott Brown is a very funny guy and an iconic figure in this club.

“He has some more years on his CV and more titles and I look forward to learning from him.”

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