Football: Celtic braced for Dundee United backlash

GLASGOW - Celtic take on Dundee United at Tannadice on Sunday and captain Scott Brown expects a tougher test than the last time the two teams met back in August.

Brown was a spectator for the match at Parkhead due to injury but marvelled at the way his team-mates tore United to shreds in a 6-1 thrashing.

The Hoops head to Tannadice full of confidence and hoping to make it nine wins in a row in the league.

However, United have bounced back well from their defeat at Parkhead and sit in third place in the league, just seven points behind leaders Celtic, and Brown thinks the Glasgow giants will meet an improved side on Sunday.

"Dundee United have had their ups and downs but they have some great individual players and Tannadice is always a hard place to go to. So it should be an interesting game and we're looking forward to it," said the Celtic captain, who is set to make his 300th appearance for the club.

"I was watching from the stands the last time we played them but it's probably the best we've played the whole season. Our passing and movement was unbelievable and I think our formation and theirs suited us, but they still attacked.

"We had a few chances early doors and that's the difference between us scoring five or six goals in games rather than not - we took our chances, which we've not done recently although we are still creating them."

Celtic will have to do without Aleksandar Tonev as the Bulgarian starts a seven-match ban for racially abusing Aberdeen's Shay Logan.

United first team coach Darren Jackson knows the danger the Hoops, who moved six points clear at the top last weekend, will pose.

But he urged his players to banish the memory of the 6-1 thrashing and believe in themselves more.

"We have bounced back from disappointments in the past because we have good players at this club," Jackson said.

"They have to keep believing that's the case because we, the coaching staff, believe in them.

"We have confidence in them. Maybe they need to believe in themselves a wee bit more. Sometimes their heads will go down a bit, but you have to handle that if you go behind in a match."

Paul Paton will miss out for United after he was handed a two-match ban by the Scottish FA for spitting on Aberdeen's Jonny Hayes during last weekend's 2-0 defeat to the Dons.ce here.

"He will deal with it. He's a strong enough character to do that."