VIRGIL VAN DIJK is determined to silence Qarabag loud-mouth Ansi Agolli who has written off Celtic’s Eurpean chances.
The Azerbaijani club’s defender insists his team are “superior” and will turn around the 1-0 first leg reverse in the Champions League qualifier return in Baku in midweek.
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But classy centre-back Van Dijk answered: “We are very close and we have a very good squad with a lot of quality. Hopefully, we can secure a Champions League place as Celtic need to be there.
“I have seen Qarabag’s results from last year and we will need to be ready. It will be a tough match.“We need to show everyone where we belong as a club – and that is the Champions League.
”We played in Kazakhstan two years ago, so we know about lengthy journeys. The Karagandy tie was only my second for Celtic and I expect a big game again.“It’s going to be a bit harder, but we experienced it then and most of the boys know what to expect.
“We need to prepare well and get good rest, eat well and get fit for the game.”
The Dutchman added: “In the league, we play with more risk and have our full-backs going forward. We want to play attractive football for the fans.
“In Europe, we need to play differently as there are other things going to be asked for from the back four and the midfielders in front of us. At the beginning of last season, we didn’t do it too well, but now we talk a lot about it.“Hopefully, we can show that on Wednesday, as well. Last year was a big learning curve for me, especially in Europe.
“I had some good days and some bad days, particularly after the Inter game. That was a tough couple of weeks, but I have learned from it.
“I know I just need to be calm, not get stressed and be confident in what I can do.
“If things go wrong, you need to remain calm, believe in yourself and, with the help of the players, it will go well.
“It has only made me stronger and I feel I am ready for anything.”