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‘WE NEED TO STEP UP,’ BROONY

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SCOTT BROWN has ordered his Celtic team-mates not to lose their focus as they prepare for the Premiership visit of Motherwell tomorrow.

The Hoops players are still coming to terms with a third consecutive season without Champions League football following the stunning 2-1 failure against Ferencvaros at the second round of qualifying at Parkhead in midweek.

Neil Lennon’s side dominated the ball, but clearly missed the influence and striking power of the injured Odsonne Edouard who will also sit out the encounter against Stephen Robinson’s Fir Park outfit with a thigh problem.

Three points are a must in the champions’ quest for the historic 10 in a row. Two mistakes brought an abrupt and early end to their adventure in the elite European competition.

Reflecting on the Hungarian humbling, Brown, speaking to the Daily Record, said: “It hurts all of the lads. It’s our responsibility. The manager picks the best team to go out there and deliver on the park. We’ve let him down, as well.

“We want to play in the Champions League, the club deserves to be there, but we need to do it right. We take a whole season to win the league, then get put out in the second qualifying round, which is very disappointing.

“It’s easy to say we need to learn from our mistakes, but we need to do it rapidly.

“We need to step up. That’s what this club deserves. We need to win Premiership games, Europa League games and Champions League games.

“On Wednesday, it wasn’t our night. We need to focus on Motherwell now. It’s huge. Every single league game is huge for us this season.

“It’s about the mentality of the whole squad and we need to make sure we look back at this and learn.

“We’ve been in this situation before and it’s not nice to take. We can’t just turn it on for Motherwell or Hamilton, or stuff like that, and expect to turn it on in the Champions League.”

 
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