Brendan Rodgers is looking forward to his first experience of the “iconic” Old Firm derby between Celtic and Rangers on Saturday.
The clash between the sides will be the first Old Firm league game since 2012, with Rangers working their way through the divisions after a demotion to Scotland’s bottom tier following insolvency.
Rodgers said he is expecting the match to be fiercely contested in front of 60,000 passionate fans at Celtic Park.
“It’s another game but it’s a special game,” Rodgers told the media on Thursday. “Always keenly fought, tough games but we’re looking forward to it.
“We know it’s an important game but we’ve had three tough games before this as well.
“Every derby is different. There’s a uniqueness to each one and this one is iconic throughout the world.
“The intensity needs to be there in your game but you need to have the cool mind to think in the game. I’ve heard noise at Celtic Park that I haven’t heard anywhere before.
“That’s why players speak so highly of it. With over 60,000 in there and 55,000 cheering for Celtic I’m looking forward to it.”
Rodgers insisted Celtic are not fearful of their status as favourites for the match and revealed that Leigh Griffiths is an injury doubt.
“When you’re Celtic and you play at home, winning is expected,” Rodgers said. “We’re not running away from wanting to be favourites.
“Whoever we play at home, our objective is to win. This is a huge game, but it’s one we want to win well. Every game we play at Celtic Park we want to win.
“Leigh wasn’t able to go away with the national team as he’d suffered a bit in the last home game.
“He had a week’s rest and trained with us this week. Today was a light day so there was no need to risk him. He had a scan and we’ll see how that is over the next 24 hours.
“[Kieran Tierney] will be fine. He has trained this week. He needed a week out but he seems fine, he looks fit and strong.”