VIRGIL van Dijk revealed that watching a DVD of Celtic beating Barcelona in the Champions League last year gave him goosebumps, and he is looking to experience victory for himself when the sides meet again tonight at Parkhead.
Goals from Victor Wanyama and Tony Watt helped Neil Lennon’s men to a famous win over the Catalans at Celtic Park last November on their way to the last 16 of the competition.
Van Dijk, who signed for the Scottish champions in the summer from FC Groningen, watched a re-run of the match along with the rest of the Celtic squad last week at the behest of their manager and, at the press conference at Celtic Park yesterday, the 22-year-old Dutch defender said: “It was a great game. It was a good goal from Victor and the fans were amazing.
“I also saw the game last year and it still gave me goosebumps seeing it again. I hope that we get it tomorrow as well. You want to win every game, home games especially. You’ve seen what was possible last year and we hope we can do that this year as well.”
The visitors arrived in Glasgow without Lionel Messi after the 26-year-old forward injured his thigh in the 2-0 win over Almeria on Saturday. However, Van Dijk believes that there is enough class in the Barca squad to cover for the Argentina superstar.
“Messi is a world-class player, of course, and he will be a big miss for them,” he said. “But they still have enough quality and enough good players in their squad. We have to be confident and believe in ourselves.
“And there is belief here, definitely, especially the players who played last year. We know what we are capable of. We saw what happened last year and I hope we can win again this year.”