CHRIS SUTTON has refused to get swept up in the euphoria of Celtic’s gutsy performance against an excellent Lille team on Thursday.
Neil Lennon’s men won their first match in five outings with a 3-2 triumph over the side who beat AC Milan 3-0 in the San Siro earlier in the Europa League Group H campaign and currently sit second in La Liga only two points adrift of Paris Saint-Germain.
It was obvious the French team were chasing a win in Glasgow to top the section, but the troubled Hoops turned in one of their best displays of a turbulent campaign as they sampled success for the first time in a torrid six ties where they lost home and away to the Seria A cracks and Sparta Prague and managed a praiseworthy 2-2 draw in Lille.
Goals from Christopher Jullien, Callum McGregor (pen) and David Turnbull saw them emerge victorious on this occasion as they demonstrated fighting qualities to claw their way back into the contest on two occasions as the visitors refused to surrender.
BHOY ON A MISSION…David Turnbull was a hit against Lille.
However, one-time Parkhead goal hero Sutton, speaking to the Daily Record, said: “Forgive me for not getting too carried away by the win against Lille.
“The pressure was off the other night and it will be firmly back on against Kilmarnock tomorrow.
“I can’t see any way back in the league for Celtic, if I’m honest. Rangers are flying and, although they will drop points, I don’t think it’ll be enough.
“Celtic need to try to keep up the pressure, though, and there is absolutely no margin for error.
“David Turnbull and Ismaila Soro have to keep their places for Killie. Their performances against Lille merit them staying in the side, regardless of who they are keeping out.
“I’m not going overboard about a dead rubber, but those two did impress. Soro did a great job of shielding the back four and mopping up when needed.
“Turnbull looked really confident on the ball, his passing and movement was good, his delivery was spot on and his finish for the goal was assured.
“He brought a freshness to the side that Celtic have been lacking.”
NO.1 SOLUTION…Conor Hazard could face Kilmarnock.
Sutton added: “The goalkeeping situation is another interesting issue. I was surprised to see Conor Hazard coming in when it looked like an opportunity for Vasilis Barkas to find his feet.
“But the youngster acquitted himself well, despite not having too much to do. Barkas has barely made a save in four months, so it’s a call for Lennon to make this weekend.
“Elsewhere, Shane Duffy was better and it was Kristoffer Ajer’s best display for a while, which suggests playing on the right might be a more suited role for him.
“Celtic are far from out of the woods just yet though. You still don’t know if they’ll beat Kilmarnock tomorrow. The Scottish Cup Final is far from a formality against Hearts. Ross County are back again, as well.
“Nothing looks straightforward for Celtic right now. They need to win the Cup and hang on until the Old Firm game at New Year.
“But Kilmarnock is a must-win game up first and the last thing this squad and manager needs is to arrive at Celtic Park to a protest before a ball is kicked.”