Wilson makes case for defence

26 April 2011 05:00

Celtic full-back Mark Wilson believes the previously-maligned Hoops defence deserve more credit for their record this season.

Celtic have only conceded 18 goals in their 33 Clydesdale Bank Premier League matches, 10 less than leaders Rangers.

"Everybody loves attacking football and scoring goals but in the last few years, there has always been so much criticism thrown at the defence, and how it isn't good enough," Wilson told the Celtic View. "Now they are keeping a good record, it's very rarely spoken of."

Manager Neil Lennon has been praised for assembling a goalscoring outfit thanks to signings such as Gary Hooper, Anthony Stokes and Kris Commons.

But he has also restored confidence in the club's defence despite having to experiment at the back before Charlie Mulgrew and Daniel Majstorovic settled in as first-choice centre-backs.

Wilson has produced arguably his best form in a Celtic strip in recent months while Emilio Izaguirre has been outstanding at left-back. Fraser Forster has impressed in goal when called upon but has been well protected in most games, something Wilson is proud of.

Wilson's resurgence following a series of injuries has coincided with a marked improvement in Celtic's defensive record.

The Hoops have only conceded five goals in the 15 SPL games Wilson has started since the turn of the year, two of which were penalties. And the 26-year-old, whose form earned him a Scotland debut in the February victory over Northern Ireland, feels the increasing solidity has helped the attacking players.

"If you have confidence in your goalkeeper and your back four, it definitely gives the boys up front a licence to try and express themselves and score a goal here and there," Wilson said.

"It takes the pressure off them a wee bit. They obviously understand that we aren't going to concede many goals. But it's not just the back four and the goalkeeper. It comes throughout the team and the midfielders must take a lot of credit for it as well as they stop a lot of attacks before they get to us."

Source: PA

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