MORTON legend Janne Lindberg today warned Celtic not to get caught cold when they face HJK Helsinki in Champions League action this week.
Neil Lennon's side will bid to take the first step towards the group stages with a Parkhead victory in the third qualifying round tie on Wednesday.
It will be the first competitive match of the season for the Hoops and Lindberg – who moved to Cappielow with fellow Finn Marko Rajamaki in 1994 – admits they will have to hit the ground running against the Veikkausliiga title hopefuls.
"I think HJK have a chance to beat Celtic, especially now because the Scottish league hasn't started yet," he told SportTimes.
"We have been playing here for a while now and the HJK players should be fitter than the Celtic players.
"Of course, Celtic will be the favourites for this game, but anything is possible.
"The match fitness and sharpness of the HJK players should be better than the Celtic team at the moment because they are only just back in training a few weeks.
"HJK have a good squad, though, so they could make a few changes and bring different players in to the team.
"Most of their players have played in Europe before and have played international football as well. They are a very experienced team.
"Antti Muurinen is a very experienced coach and is a very motivated person, he gets the best out of his players.
"He has worked in international football for many years and in European games as well.
"He is a very good tactician, he is not afraid to make changes during the game and to try and influence the match."
The tie with HJK is seen as the best Celtic could have hoped for in the Euro draw as they avoided tricky trips across the continent.
While Lennon's side have ambitions of progressing through the next two rounds and into the money-spinning group stages, HJK are unlikely to set their sights on the latter stages.
But Lindberg, a former Finnish international and boss of MyPa, insists his compatriots will have no fear as they prepare for a major Euro battle.
He said: "They have a good team at the moment and did well in the Finnish league last season.
"They do have a couple of good players – and players who could cause Celtic problems.
"As the league season has gone on, they have got stronger and stronger and look a better team. They are a very good team even though they lost to Haka at the weekend.
"They still have a lot of players who have international experience. I don't think they will go to Celtic Park afraid.
"Yes, Celtic will be favourites but the first leg will be very important for HJK. They will want a good result in Glasgow to bring back to Finland."