McCourt focus on winning
Paddy McCourt claims that he would love to catch up to leaders Rangers but he insists that having games in hand does not mean anything.
By Simon Porter
Last Updated: 23/11/11 10:17am
Celtic winger Paddy McCourt claims that he would love to catch up to SPL leaders Rangers but he insists that having games in hand does not mean anything unless you win them.
If Neil Lennon's men defeat Dunfermline on Wednesday and St Mirren on Saturday then the gap between themselves and their bitter rivals Rangers will be shortened to just four points.
With much expectation from the Hoops fans the 27-year-old winger claims that having games in hand does not make the matches any easier and he also explains that he just wants to focus on one game at a time.
"I am not falling into that trap," said McCourt. "It's all right having games in hand but many a year I've seen that teams have had games in hand but haven't won them. So we will be going out to win it first and see where that takes us.
"Going down to seven would be a lot healthier, don't get me wrong but the point I am emphasising is that it is no good having a game in hand if you don't pick points up.
"Even if the gap is four before Rangers play on Sunday, there is still a lot of football to be played after that."
The league leaders drew against St Johnstone on Saturday whilst Celtic defeated Inverness on the same day.
The Northern Ireland International believes, however, that it is unlikely that Rangers will slump into poor form and he insists that the focus should be on his own team rather than on their rivals.
"To be fair to Rangers, since I've been here, they haven't really gone through many sticky patches," McCourt said.
"They seem to grind out results which has probably served them well in the last few years.
"But we don't look across there, our sole focus is on us, we can see improvement and we are picking up wins."
Celtic manager Lennon insists that the team must make the most of their chance to catch up to Ally McCoist's men, saying: "It is the game in hand we have been waiting on for a little while so we have to maximise that opportunity.
"We have come through two very tough away games and now we have two home games. But even if we win it is seven points which is still a substantial lead for Rangers. My major concern short-term is to get the wins in the bag."