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Celtic boss speaks after Champions League fiasco

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According to Celtic manager Steven Gerrard, the “small” clubs are a huge threat because qualifying to the group stage means a lot to them.

Celtic was kicked out of the UEFA Champions League preliminary round by Romanian side CFR Cluj.

And the Scottish Premier League side was shocked to see its hopes for glory vanish so easily.

“What last night shows is that European ties are never over, even when you get a positive result in the first leg,” manager Steven Gerrard told The Daily Star.

“Some of these teams that people don’t know much about – Cluj from Romania, for example, or Midtjylland from Denmark – they carry a huge threat.”

“They’re so desperate for financial reasons to progress, like most of us, so my players need to take note of last night and make sure we deal with our second leg much better,” he said.

“We had the lead and we’ve let it slip through our own decision making.”

“The goals we conceded are crazy.”

He commented: “You’ve got to do the basics well – you’ve got to stop crosses, close people down, get your head on things – and it was almost as if we scored and wanted to switch off.”

“We’ve only ourselves to blame.”

“If you don’t do the basics defensively well enough then at this level you get punished. We’ve let it go,” Gerrard concluded.