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Lennon insists Celtic will not be affected by complacency against Copenhagen

Celtic fans have to guard against any thoughts of complacency against FC Copenhagen at Parkhead, according to boss Neil Lennon.

The Hoops drew 1-1 in the first-leg of the last-32 Europa League tie at the Parken Stadium last week to give them the advantage for the return game in Glasgow on Thursday night.

However, the tie could have swung more firmly towards the Scottish champions if they had capitalised on their impressive first-half performance and the several opportunities created.

Lennon, who will be boosted by the return of skipper Scott Brown and Scotland winger James Forrest from injury, was keen to stress that entry into the last-16 is still up for grabs.

He said: “Copenhagen is a dangerous team and there are no formalities at this stage of the competition for anyone, unless other teams have a big lead from the first leg.

“It is 1-1, the tie could psychologically switch all the way.

“Hopefully we can get the first goal and get on the front foot but we are going to have to earn the right to play.

“The players are quietly confident. They are at home, our home record is good but there will be no complacency or taking anything for granted.

“Copenhagen gave us a really tough second half out there, we had to work really hard to avoid going behind.

“We are at home so that gives us a bit of an advantage. The tie is still there for both teams.”

Celtic have not won a post-group stage knockout tie in Europe since they beat Barcelona in the last-16 of the UEFA Cup in 2004.

“I wasn’t aware of that so maybe that will act as extra motivation for the players,” said the former Celtic captain, who revealed his squad have been practising penalties.

“We are not thinking about records or timelines or anything like this, we are thinking about the opposition who are good and how we overcome them over 90 minutes or it might go to extra-time, you never know.

“The mentality has been fantastic so far. I want it to continue.

“I want us to be in the last-16, we are good enough to do that but we are going to have to play well.”

On February 26 last year, Lennon was appointed the club’s manager for a second time until the end of the season after the departure of Brendan Rodgers to take the Leicester job, with the post made permanent after he helped the Hoops clinch the domestic treble treble.

He said: “It seems like yesterday, it was a long, long time in my life.

“It was tumultuous, exciting, raw at times but very immensely fulfilling.

“Coming in last season I was trying to win the treble and keep the momentum going as much as possible.

“We had a great Europa League group, a good result in Copenhagen and hopefully we can finish the job off tomorrow night but we are under no illusions as to how difficult that is going to be.”

Brown picked up a calf injury last week and he missed the 3-1 Ladbrokes Premiership win over Kilmarnock at the weekend, as did Forrest with a knock.

Midfielder Olivier Ntcham also injured his calf in Copenhagen and is still out while Ryan Christie is suspended after picking up a yellow card last week.

Lennon said: “James and Scott are fit. Oli is not fit and will be out for maybe another week.

“We had a great win at the weekend but obviously to have Scott and Jamesy in the team is a confidence boost for the squad.”