Charlie hopes for Ne'erday cheer

CHARLIE MULGREW hopes to be waiting to greet Partick Thistle when the Jags are Celtic's first foot at Parkhead tomorrow.

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Charlie Mulgrew is set to return from a groin injury
Charlie Mulgrew is set to return from a groin injury

The midfielder is set to return after missing the last four games with a groin injury.

Dutch winger Derk Boerrigter is also pushing for a place after an enforced absence with a hamstring strain.

And Teemu Pukki and Amido Balde are hoping for a bit more pitch-time in this match.

But manager Neil Lennon reckons it might be too soon for the first new Bhoy to join the club in the transfer window, which opens at midnight tonight, Holmbert Fridjonsson.

The Icelandic hitman has been training at Lennoxtown for the past couple of weeks. But, after a full season with Fram in Reykjavik, more conditioning work is being done with the 20-year-old.

Nevertheless, Lennon is set to bring in the New Year by ringing the changes, but not because he considers a home game against Thistle to be an easy way to begin 2014.

He needs no reminding how tough the Jags made it in the first Glasgow derby of the season, a match at Firhill which the champions had to battle to win 2-1 with the winner coming from Balde 15 minutes from time.

Thistle have struggled since and were crushed 5-1 by Motherwell on Sunday.

But Lennon has seen a lot of Alan Archibald's team, and expects them to revel in spotlight which will be thrown on tomorrow's game.

The Hoops boss - who is looking to make it 19 games unbeaten in the SPFL Premiership - said: "Thistle play good football. So we have to make sure our concentration levels are good. But it's great to be back home.

"After tough back-to-back games away from home, the players will be looking forward to getting out at Celtic Park. Teams have made it difficult for us to break them down at times, but we've played well at home,"


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