Aberdeen can win at Celtic Park says Derek McInnes
Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes believes his side have what it takes to claim a win against Celtic in their crucial top-of-the-table clash at Parkhead on Sunday.
Parkhead: Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes believes his side have what it takes to claim a win against Celtic in their crucial top-of-the-table clash at Parkhead on Sunday.
The Dons trail the Hoops by three points and go into the match unbeaten in 13 matches since Celtic defeated them at Pittodrie in November.
"We`re playing with a lot of confidence at the moment, we have a lot of strong performers, a lot of players playing at a level that`s pleasing," McInnes, whose side last managed to claim a win in Glasgow in February 2014 when they knocked Celtic out of the Scottish Cup, said.
"I think any win, at this stage of the season, if you can go joint top with Celtic going into March, then it`s a huge dose of belief for everybody.
"I believe the team is capable of going and winning there and I know I have a team that believe that as well."
Despite the fact a win would bring the Dons level on points with Celtic, albeit the Hoops would still have a game in hand, in the race for the Scottish Premiership, the Dons boss denies Sunday`s encounter is a must win match.
"The aim, as always, is to win and some games are a bigger challenge than others. We want to go and try and win the next game and not look any further ahead," McInnes said.
"Every time I`ve taken the team to Parkhead, I`ve felt we`ve been stronger. There are still 33 points to play for after Sunday so it`s wrong to say it`s a must win game for us."
The Hoops are also in fine fettle heading into the match having won 11, drawn one and lost one of their previous 13 fixtures.
Ronny Deila`s side also gave a fine account of themselves as they narrowly lost 4-3 to Inter Milan over two legs in their Europa League round of 32 clash.
The Norwegian manager has recovered from a shaky start to lead his side on the charge for a domestic treble this season and Deila insists the pressure to win going into the match lies with Aberdeen.
"The pressure is on both teams but Aberdeen has to win, maybe a draw, to stay in the fight for the championship so this is a very important game. If we win we put ourselves in a very good position," the Celtic manager said.
"And with the progress we are making I would be very disappointed if we lost the points we were ahead.
"But again we have to win, and it is going to be tough. They are a very good team, with speed, good on the counter attacks, they have played together for a long time, they have consistency. You can see they have built from where they were so we have to put in a very good performance."
Leigh Griffiths remains a doubt for Celtic with an ankle injury while Charlie Mulgrew and Mikel Lustig are ruled out.
Jonny Hayes, Nicky Low and Russell Anderson will miss out through injury for the Dons.
Fixtures (1500 unless otherwise stated)
Celtic v Aberdeen (1200)