Celtic Park

Next Game

Celtic v Rangers

Sunday, 01 February 2015, 13:30

Scot League Cup Semi-Final

Last Game

Ross Co 0 - 1 Celtic

Saturday, 24 January 2015, 12:45

Scots Prem

Brown: Qualification is key

Celtic skipper Scott Brown has stressed the importance of Champions League qualification ahead of their trip to Kazakhstan.

Last Updated: 20/08/13 at 15:17 Post Comment

Scott Brown: Stressed the importance of Celtic's Champions League qualificat

Scott Brown: Stressed the importance of Celtic's Champions League qualificat

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Brown insists Celtic's players are well aware of what is at stake against Shakhter Karagandy in the first leg of their Champions League play-off tie in the Astana Arena on Tuesday night.

Entry into the lucrative group stages of the competition for the second successive season could inject around £20million into the Parkhead coffers.

The Scotland midfielder believes his team-mates are focused on the job in hand and in even better shape to take that next step than they were a year ago.

"The players understand how huge this is, how big Celtic are and why we should be in the Champions League," he said.

"The two ties are huge, the biggest of the season and we are only three or four weeks in.

"We were back really early, it was a hard pre-season but we are starting to see the benefits now.

"I feel we are fitter and sharper than this time last season.

"Not having long off during the close season has helped get up to match speed quicker.

"But it is going to be very hard. We have seen videos of our opponents. A draw is a good result for us going back to Celtic Park."

Celtic will be asked again to play on an artificial surface after overcoming plastic pitches in earlier qualifiers against Cliftonville and Elfsborg.

Brown, though, is taking it in his stride, adding: "I don't think it is ideal for a qualification for the Champions League but we played on plastic in the last round in Elfsborg so we know what to expect."

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

was there, it was embarrassing - the team looked totally unbalanced from the off, the defence was woeful and when Mikel came off injured it got even worse with nobody in front of them. Up front on several occasions we had opportunities and nobody would shoot - it was a complete farse! On the back of Salah's performance I'm glad there is talk of getting shot...

Fly1ngh1gh
Cup defeat shames Mourinho

G

reat to see Tommy Rosicky getting some love. A wonderful player. Such a pity we lost so long to injury. I was so excited when we signed him, this resurgence only makes the absences seem more of a lost opportunity.

cheshire-gooner
16 Conclusions: FA Cup Fourth Round Weekend

A

pparently Chiles has blamed Twitter trolls for his exit. Proof that even the worst things can get great results at times.

cheshire-gooner
Adrian Chiles to leave ITV

Footer 365

Gary Lineker could host BT Sport's Champions League coverage

Gary Lineker has held talks with BT Sport about presenting their Champions League coverage next season.

Contract news: Robin van Persie unsure if he will be offered new Manchester United deal

Robin van Persie says he has no idea if he will be offered a new contract at Manchester United.

Manchester United U21s beat Liverpool 2-1 as Victor Valdes makes first appearance for the club

Goals from Nick Powell and Paddy McNair gave Manchester United's U21 side victory over Liverpool at Leigh Sports Village.

Mail Box

The Problem With FA Cup Shocks...

...is that the draw for the next round is pretty shocking. Blackburn v Stoke, anybody? We also have mails on LVG and ManUnited, who drew plenty under Fergie...

You're Man Utd, For Crying Out Loud!

Defending a 0-0 draw with Cambridge on the grounds that other teams lost to lower-league opposition is not befitting of Man United. We're inclined to agree with Mailboxers...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company