Pressure is on Ajax - Lennon

06 November 2013 11:02

Neil Lennon insists the pressure is on Ajax ahead of Wednesday night's Champions League clash with Celtic at the Amsterdam ArenA.

The Hoops' 2-1 victory over the Dutch champions last month gave Celtic their first three points of the campaign and sent Frank De Boer's side bottom of Group H with one point from three games.

The Parkhead manager believes that even a draw will keep his side in the hunt for a qualification place ahead of the visit of AC Milan, two points in front of the Scottish champions, as they prepare to play leaders Barcelona, later in the month.

"It is a pressure game for Ajax," said Lennon.

"We can come here and, not be relaxed, but have a real go at the game.

"If we are to progress we have to pick something up away but we don't need to win.

"If we can get a point and beat Milan at home that gives us seven points and gives us a real chance of qualifying.

"I think it was important that we got some points on the board against Ajax in the last game.

"But we are under no illusions as to how difficult this will be.

"Ajax were very unfortunate not to beat Milan here in match day two.

"I think the Champions League inspires players and gets the best out of them.

"I hope that is the case for our players tonight."

De Boer, however, remains confident, following his side's performance in Glasgow, that they will get their qualification hopes back on track with a victory.

"If you look at that match we had chances and a lot of good moments," he said.

"Celtic didn't create any chances but scored twice and won the game.

"Celtic can be confident, they have had some good results in the last year, (beating) Barcelona for example, so they can be confident.

"But I saw good things from my side so I also have confidence in my team that we can get three points here and then we are one point ahead (of Celtic).

"It is a crucial game for us. For them, a draw is maybe enough so they can wait more than they did in Glasgow.

"We have to force the game but we are in good shape to create chances and get the three points."

Source: PA