McGregor: Celtic need to bounce back from Euro disappointment

The Premiership league-leader host Dundee at Celtic Park on Sunday.

Celtic captain Callum McGregor looking to bounce back from Bodo/Glimt defeat in Dundee clash SNS Group

Celtic captain Callum McGregor is looking to get back to winning ways this weekend following Thursday night’s defeat in the Europa Conference League.

The Premiership league-leaders have a mountain to climb if they want to reach the next stage of the new European tournament after losing 3-1 to Norwegian champions Bodo/Glimt at Celtic Park.

But with Dundee visiting the east-end of Glasgow on Sunday, McGregor is confident they can continue their impressive domestic form with a win over the relegation threatened side.

If Rangers beat Dundee United at Tannadice in the earlier game on Sunday they could be sitting top of the league by the time the Hoops kick-off at 3pm, making it even more important for that Celtic take all three points.

The captain said: “It’s hugely important to bounce back, we’re going well in the league. Thursday was a disappointing result. When you have a good result you need to follow it up with another good result.

“This is exactly the same. Everyone will be looking at us to see how we react. Are our heads going to go down? Are we going to work as hard?

“We have to go and answer those questions. The good thing about football is that every three or four days you get a chance to rectify a situation.

“That’s exactly what we’ll try and do now. Our full focus will be on recovering in the next few days and then we go again here against Dundee.”

Celtic had won their previous nine games and 16 out of their last 17 in total before Thursday but Dundee are coming with a new manager and their own need for points.

“These are all huge games,” McGregor said. “Especially when you get to this point in the season, every point counts and every game counts.

“You have to be at it. It’s up to the players to make sure they rest, get the right fuel into them and go again when the games come around.

“That’s the beauty of playing at this club. The standards are always super high and you have to meet them. You’ve got to do everything you can so when the next game comes, you are fresh and ready to go and you attack every game exactly the same. You need to win.”

Dundee have had an unusual week, sacking manager James McPake after two consecutive wins and appointing 64-year-old Mark McGhee for his first league job in four years.

The consequences are hard to judge but McGregor is wary of a fresh approach.

“I’ve seen this a lot of times in football where teams get a quick bounce off a new manager,” the midfielder said.

“Obviously they won their last two games anyway so the players will be feeling good about themselves.

“We just have to do our homework and when we turn up here on Sunday we have to give everything to win the game and that’s what we’ll be doing.”

Celtic midfielder Yosuke Ideguchi is available again for Sunday’s visit of Dundee.

The Japanese player was ineligible for Thursday as he is not listed in Celtic’s Europa Conference League squad.

Mikey Johnston remains out along with Albian Ajeti, Kyogo Furuhashi and David Turnbull.

The new Dundee manager will be able to call upon defender Vontae Daley-Campbell.

The on-loan Leicester player has served a two-match ban after being sent off against Ross County.

Jordan Marshall is battling to be fit and Lee Ashcroft is building up his fitness following a hamstring injury, while Cillian Sheridan remains a long-term absentee.

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