RONNY DEILA is satisfied with Celtic’s preparation for tomorrow night’s Champions League qualifier against FC Stjarnan at Parkhead.
And the Hoops boss would happily settle for an action replay of last season when the club took on Icelandic opposition in the shape of KR Reykjavik at the same stage of the competition.
Back then, Deila was pleased as his new team came through the initial test with their reputation intact and a 5-0 aggregate score to their name.
The qualification bid faltered after that, however, and the Celts eventually exited the competition at the final hurdle to NK Maribor.

Deila said: “It’s a little bit like last year. Icelandic football has improved and been good, especially the national team.

“There is always a good mentality and they produce a lot of good players, but, saying that, we have to be prepared and have to go out with 100 per cent tempo and intensity.

“We are, of course, the favourites to win this game and that’s what we want to do. We want to try to get as good a result as we can get.

“You always respect the team, but I can only talk about the performances and preparation and the preparation has been very good.

“We’ve had good training and three matches with no injuries. We are prepared and I’m really looking forward to starting up now so that’s the status right now.

“When I came in last year I didn’t know anything about my team, almost. I didn’t know too much about the opponents and it was a new style and level.

“Now we’ve played games in Europe and those experiences will make me more prepared this time so I’m looking forward to a big, good challenge.

“I’m more prepared as a manager. If not, I have to do something else!”

Wednesday’s clash will be Celtic’s first competitive game of the new season yet they will have to wait another two-and-a-half weeks before the start of the SPFL season.

Stjarnan, on the other hand, are well into their league campaign and will arrive match-sharp through playing competitive fixtures.

Deila added: “We always want a little more time to prepare, but in the three weeks we have had we have done everything we can do and I can’t see anything we should have done differently so we have no excuses.

“We really look forward to the game and I’m confident we’re going to have a good performance tomorrow.

“Not going away has been very good. We’ve had good teams here and we have also been training to have control of games. We feel ready for the game.”

Click Here for Comments >

About Author