Celtic face French force

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The Independent Online

Bordeaux's coach, Elie Baup, has denied that his side's poor league form is a problem ahead of tonight's Uefa Cup tie against high-flying Celtic by claiming they simply face a much harder time domestically than their opponents.

Bordeaux's coach, Elie Baup, has denied that his side's poor league form is a problem ahead of tonight's Uefa Cup tie against high-flying Celtic by claiming they simply face a much harder time domestically than their opponents.

His side have been criticised for poor results this term, but they have improved recently to move up to eighth place in the French league. "We are not in such bad shape, really," said Baup. "You can't look at the French league in the same way as the Scottish league because they are very different. There are 15 teams in the French league and every club is together, so you could have one good day and be up there and next you can go right down to the bottom."

"It's very difficult to come from playing in Europe to playing in this league whereas in the Scottish league you get a lot more space to play," he added.

Baup has injury problems ahead of the game, with the Belgian midfielder Marc Wilmots joining the Russian Alexei Smertin on the sidelines.

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