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Van Dijk: We'll return better

Celtic defender Virgil van Dijk wants the team to return from the winter break refreshed and ready to continue their march to a third straight Scottish title.

Last Updated: 08/01/14 at 19:00 Post Comment

Virgil van Dijk: Hoping to feel refreshed after break

Virgil van Dijk: Hoping to feel refreshed after break

The Hoops headed to Turkey on the back of a 20-game unbeaten run, after taking up the option of postponing their top-flight clash with Kilmarnock in favour of a sunshine break.

And Van Dijk hopes the Scottish champions reap the benefits of the warm-weather training when they resume league business upon their return.

The defender told CelticTV: "Hopefully we can keep the unbeaten run until the end of the season and not concede any goals for as long as possible.

"We will see what happens. We are 20 games unbeaten so it's good to come here on the back of that. We are relaxing and will enjoy the sun."

During their stay in the coastal resort, Celtic will take part in the Turkish Airlines Antalya Cup, and will play Trabzonspor before facing either Champions League group rivals Ajax or Galatasaray at the weekend.

Van Dijk added: "All the boys have played a lot of games. We have to take a rest now and we will take it.

"The weather is good. The sun is out and there are blue skies. It's much better than it was in Glasgow. It gets you smiling again and makes you happy.

"The conditions here are very good and we are looking forward to the game tomorrow night."

Meanwhile, goalkeeper Fraser Forster believes the character shown by Celtic in grinding out recent results has been impressive.

He said: "We've not been at our best over the last few weeks but we have ground out wins, which is the most important thing at the end of the day - picking up the three points.

"If you can perform well it's an added bonus and we have been pleased to keep the run going. We are high in confidence.

"We have picked up a lot more results following Champions League games than we did last year, so we have better experience there.

"Although we were disappointed by the Champions League, there was less of a hangover after it.

"We are a year older and a bit more experienced, obviously off the back of last season when we played Champions League games and then went into domestic games.

"Everyone has done well and contributed."

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Readers' Comments

W

e have the personnel. The trick is keeping them fit. Carrick and Blind have missed large chunks of the season, while the defence has been one muddled mess of intermittent stooges, all coming and going at various intervals thus far. We may be just short of title winning quality, but we're half way through. An injury crisis to either of the top two could change things. Optimistic, yes, but not unrealistic.

HarryBoulton
One Point And One Conclusion For United

P

arish is the man to blame for this shambles. Pulis must be chuckling into his left over turkey sandwich. I pray this doesn't mean the Neil Warnock media machine will kick in now and he'll be back on the telly box.

magicfuller
Warnock sacked by Palace

W

e almost found a new way to lose, just when I thought it was getting boring Giroud does that. Although Arsenal are deservedly called 'soft' the entire midfield is out injured. Still must admit MU are managing to win despite a similar raft of absentees. Think the Gunners have good players but poorly coached.

gettalong
Wenger: Giroud deserved red

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