Neil Lennon: Celtic have 'quiet determination' to add 10th successive trophy

Lennon steered Celtic to Scottish Cup success - their ninth consecutive domestic honour - in May
Lennon steered Celtic to Scottish Cup success - their ninth consecutive domestic honour - in May
Scottish League Cup Final: Rangers v Celtic
Venue: Hampden Park, Glasgow Date: Sunday, 8 December Kick-off: 15:00 GMT
Coverage: Listen live on BBC Radio Scotland and follow live text commentary on the BBC Sport Scotland website and app.

Celtic manager Neil Lennon says it will take "a big performance" from Rangers to deny his side a 10th domestic trophy in Sunday's Scottish League Cup final.

Lennon expects striker Odsonne Edouard to start at Hampden after injury and also declared Jonny Hayes, Boli Bolingoli and Mohamed Elyounoussi fit.

Premiership leaders Celtic have lost just two of the last 16 Old Firm games.

"There's a relentlessness about them, they refuse to lose," Lennon said of his team.

"We're in brilliant form, 11 wins in a row, but we're not taking anything for granted because we know Rangers are playing very well. It has all the ingredients of a cracking game.

"They have improved, but what gets overlooked is we are improving as well. The results and performances would back that up.

"It will take a big performance some day - hopefully not Sunday - to end this run of trophies. We're excited about it. The boys are defending the trophy and there's a quiet motivation about them to keep it going."

French forward Edouard has missed the last three games with a "niggle" but trained on Friday and is set to return to face Steven Gerrard's side.

"I think there's a very good chance he will start," Lennon added. "He did a full session today and looks like he has come through it no problem. We've done pretty well in his absence, but there's no question we are a better team when he's fit and available.

"Odsonne and Jonny Hayes have been out for about two weeks, Boli and Elyounoussi has been a bit longer. But they are all in good condition."

Celtic showed their battling qualities to move clear at the top of the league on Wednesday night when Scott Brown's stoppage-time winner defeated Hamilton Academical, while Rangers squandered a two-goal lead to draw at Aberdeen.

"Everyone was talking about goal difference for a while and now we're two points clear," Lennon said. "I don't think it's going to have any impact on Sunday. You have to take the game in isolation."

Lennon is confident his players' domestic dominance proves they can handle the pressure of extending their silverware stranglehold.

The League Cup remains the only trophy the 48-year-old has yet to win as a manager, while Rangers have gone eight years since their last major honour.

"It's just another game, with a trophy at the end of it," Lennon said. "You can see the players don't take it for granted.

"Semi-final performance, there was pressure going into that game against Hibs and they handled the occasion brilliantly, played fantastically well. If we can get to that level again I'll be delighted because it will take a good team to beat us."

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