Ledley urges Celtic to bounce back to lift title

 

Joe Ledley insists Celtic cannot dwell on their Old Firm derby disappointment as they prepare for what could be another opportunity to clinch the Premier League title.

Victory over Rangers would have allowed the Hoops to claim the SPL crown at Ibrox on Sunday but a 3-2 defeat denied them a title party on their greatest rivals' turf.

Depending on the outcome of Rangers' game at Motherwell on Saturday, Celtic could be in the position once again to confirm themselves as champions when they host St Johnstone the following day.

But, having suffered back-to-back defeats in major matches after also losing the Scottish Communities League Cup final to Kilmarnock, Ledley believes Neil Lennon's men must restore their focus.

He said: "We're going to have another opportunity to prove ourselves and hopefully get a win. We just need to concentrate on the three points. We weren't happy with how things went on Sunday, but we need to pick ourselves up and go again.

The Welsh midfielder added: "They were fantastic. They are the best support in Scotland without a doubt and were fantastic on Sunday. They sang all the way through and they are the best supporters in the world. They just proved it again at Ibrox.

"They give us all a massive boost and a buzz when you go into the games and you just want to try to work as hard as you can for them and try to get the win for them, as they had obviously spent a lot of money for tickets."

Saints defeated Celtic at Parkhead at the start of the season and will also be aiming for a win as they bid to take a step closer to securing European football next season.

Ledley said: "They have been one of the better teams this season and are going to make it difficult for us. We're going to have to be on the top of our game to try and break them down."

Meanwhile, Andy Little paid tribute to his Rangers team-mates for brushing aside the club's troubles to claim an impressive win over rivals Celtic.

Rangers were plunged into administration last month, with the playing staff subsequently agreeing to wage cuts of up to 75 per cent in a bid to avoid widespread redundancies.

Little said: "Every single player just showed they didn't want to be beaten. That really came through and we had a lot of pride. We used all the bad stuff which has happened to us to our advantage and it was absolutely superb. The attitude from every single one of our players was unreal."

Goals from Sone Aluko, Little and Lee Wallace saw Rangers race into a commanding lead, as Cha Du-Ri and Victor Wanyama both saw red for the Hoops. Carlos Bocanegra was then ordered off as the home side's numbers were also depleted late on and Scott Brown converted from the resultant penalty, before Thomas Rogne pulled another goal back deep into injury time.

Little added: "We had a silly last five minutes but up until then we were unbelievable and the boys who started deserve a lot of credit. We played to our strengths. Our back three were superb and we ran the midfield as well."

Little – whose Ibrox career has been blighted by injury - netted the second goal with his first touch of the ball just seconds after coming off the bench.

He said: "It's still sinking in. When I was sitting on the bench, I was thinking about how good it would be to score and I was planning my celebration but I think I just went mad when the ball went in.

"I'm loving every minute at the moment and it hasn't just been in the last four or five games. I've been feeling really good for a few months and I've been scoring in reserve games. It is a confidence thing I suppose. I've focused on playing up front again and scoring goals is what I want to do."

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

Giants Club: After wholesale butchery of Idi Amin's regime, Uganda’s giants flourish once again

Uganda's giants are flourishing once again

After the wholesale butchery of Idi Amin's regime, elephant populations are finally recovering
The London: After 350 years, the riddle of Britain's exploding fleet is finally solved

After 350 years, the riddle of Britain's exploding fleet is finally solved

Archaeologists will recover a crucial item from the wreck of the London which could help shed more light on what happened in the vessel's final seconds
Airbus has patented a jet that could fly from London to New York in one hour

Airbus has patented a jet that could fly from London to New York in one hour

The invention involves turbojets and ramjets - a type of jet engine - and a rocket motor
10 best sun creams for kids

10 best sun creams for kids

Protect delicate and sensitive skin with products specially formulated for little ones
Tate Sensorium: New exhibition at Tate Britain invites art lovers to taste, smell and hear art

Tate Sensorium

New exhibition at Tate Britain invites art lovers to taste, smell and hear art
Ashes 2015: Nice guy Steven Finn is making up for lost time – and quickly

Nice guy Finn is making up for lost time – and quickly

He was man-of-the-match in the third Test following his recall to the England side
Ashes 2015: Remember Ashton Agar? The No 11 that nearly toppled England

Remember Ashton Agar?

The No 11 that nearly toppled England
Turkey-Kurdish conflict: Obama's deal with Ankara is a betrayal of Syrian Kurds and may not even weaken Isis

US betrayal of old ally brings limited reward

Since the accord, the Turks have only waged war on Kurds while no US bomber has used Incirlik airbase, says Patrick Cockburn
VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but doubts linger over security

'A gift from Egypt to the rest of the world'

VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but is it really needed?
Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, applauds a man who clearly has more important things on his mind
The male menopause and intimations of mortality

Aches, pains and an inkling of mortality

So the male menopause is real, they say, but what would the Victorians, 'old' at 30, think of that, asks DJ Taylor
Man Booker Prize 2015: Anna Smaill - How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?

'How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?'

Man Booker Prize nominee Anna Smaill on the rise of Kiwi lit
Bettany Hughes interview: The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems

Bettany Hughes interview

The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems
Art of the state: Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China

Art of the state

Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China
Mildreds and Vanilla Black have given vegetarian food a makeover in new cookbooks

Vegetarian food gets a makeover

Long-time vegetarian Holly Williams tries to recreate some of the inventive recipes in Mildreds and Vanilla Black's new cookbooks