Celtic draw inspiration from cup run

Martin O'Neill has challenged his Celtic side to use the memory of last season's bitter Uefa Cup final disappointment in Seville to inspire another attempt to secure the trophy.

Celtic saw the silverware slip through their fingers when Porto beat them in extra time, but after being parachuted back into this season's competition from the Champions' League, the manager wants to go one better.

But O'Neill has told his side to ignore the fact that tonight's opponents, FK Teplice, do not possess the glamour of some of the visitors to Parkhead last season. The Czech Republic team have already beaten Feyenoord and Kaiserslautern.

"Any side that has knocked out Kaiserslautern and Feyenoord deserves respect," O'Neill said. "They have earned the right to be here. The Uefa Cup run last season gave us confidence but it has also made us aware of the need to focus. Boavista were not as strong a side as Vigo, Stuttgart or Liverpool but we could still have lost that semi-final. But there is definitely a bond among the lads now.

"We are a million miles from this season's final in Gothenburg but the thoughts of Seville do drive us on. We would love to go back to the final. We have a spirit here but I think it has been heightened by last year's experiences."

O'Neill will be without Shaun Maloney, who damaged knee ligaments on Monday, and Neil Lennon, who is suspended following his verbal assault on the referee Urs Meier in Lyon in December. Celtic felt that Meier cost them a place in the last 16 with his controversial late penalty award.

Alan Thompson missed that match because of suspension. The midfielder echoed O'Neill. "Seville was painful because we went so close," Thompson said. "However, it was still a career highlight. Look at the nights we had en route to Seville. We would all love to have that again. It does lift us for this one to try and achieve those highs again. We know as players how rewarding the Uefa Cup final can be."

Celtic (probable 3-5-2): Douglas; Varga, Balde, McNamara; Agathe, Lambert, Petrov, Pearson, Thompson; Larsson, Sutton.

FK Teplice (possible 4-4-2): Potgulka; Leitner, Rada, Kolar, Hunal; Tesarik, Horvath, Skala, Kuchar; Verbir, Divecky.

Referee: K Lautz (Austria).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Isis fighters travel in a vehicle as they take part in a military parade along the streets of Syria's northern Raqqa province
Arts and Entertainment
Christian Grey cradles Ana in the Fifty Shades of Grey film
filmFifty Shades of Grey trailer provokes moral outrage in US
Life and Style
The veteran poverty campaigner Sir Bob Geldof issues a stark challenge to emerging economies at the Melbourne HIV/Aids conference
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch and John Malkovich talk Penguins of Madagascar at Comic-Con
comic-con 2014Cumberbatch fans banned from asking about Sherlock at Comic-Con
Arts and Entertainment
Chris Pratt stars in Guardians of the Galaxy
filmGuardians Of The Galaxy should have taken itself a bit more seriously, writes Geoffrey Macnab
Sir Chris Hoy won six Olympic golds - in which four events?
Life and Style
People may feel that they're procrastinating by watching TV in the evening
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform