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Published : 03 Apr 2011 10:30:43Rss feed
Scott Brown and El-Hadji Diouf are similiar in wind-up style and the former appears to be enjoying the fun between them Scott Brown has described his on-going on-field rivalry with Rangers striker El-Hadji Diouf as merely "friendly banter" as he looked forward to another Old Firm game before the end of the season. After scoring the equaliser in the Scottish Cup fifth-round game at Ibrox in February, captain Brown celebrated by standing still with his arms outstretched in front of Diouf, with whom he had been engaged in a sledging battle all afternoon. Diouf got his own back with copy-cat celebrations while holding the Co-operative Insurance Cup after Rangers won 2-1 after extra-time in the final at Hampden last month. This sort on tit-for-tit jibe will add further spice, if needed, to the seventh Old Firm game of the season after the SPL split. However, Brown played down apparent tensions between him and Diouf in particular, and the two sides in general. The Scotland midfielder said: "It's friendly banter. Whatever happens on the park stays on the park. The Old Firm games have been great. It will be a record seven games this season. There is one more to go and I'm looking forward to it. The more the merrier." Brown believes the side with the most "bottle" will lift the trophy at the end of the title race and admits the sight of the Rangers players celebrating at Hampden will be used as motivation. He said: "It's always going to be tight. There is a lot of pressure on us and a lot of pressure on them as well so, at the end of the day, it's about who has got the bottle to go and win the league. We got beat in the final and we don't want that to happen again. We saw Rangers celebrating and it wasn't nice. We spoke about that in the changing room but we have to get on with it. There are two more trophies remaining and we want them. We have to make sure the cup defeat is out of everyone's mind. We can't go into the game on Saturday being depressed and feeling sorry for ourselves, we have to get right back into it." Celtic assistant manager Johan Mjallby again took over media duties ahead of the abortive trip to Inverness and said: "I haven't really spoken to Neil about when he wants to start doing the media again, but I think he will be back soon. Obviously he is my boss and if he tells me to do it, then I do it." Neil Lennon has not spoken to the media since before the Scottish Cup replay win over Rangers on 2 March which ended with the Irishman and Ibrox assistant Ally McCoist having to be separated at the end of a tempestuous game. Brown recognises a kindred spirit in his gaffer, who is serving a four-game touchline ban after being sent to the stand at Tynecastle last November. Brown said: "I think it is passion for the game and you don't want to take that out of him. It's the same as me, we are both similar people. We want to win and that's what drives him on and that's what drives me on. You have to be a winner at this club and if you look at this dressing room, all the lads want to win."
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