Celtic need 26 wins in a row to win title, says Joe Ledley

By Liam McLeodBBC Scotland
Celtic players troop off against Hibs
Celtic's players were disappointed by their goalless draw with Hibs

Midfielder Joe Ledley thinks Celtic have to win their 26 remaining Scottish Premier League matches if they are to win the title.

Celtic are 12 points behind Rangers in the table after Saturday's goalless draw with Hibernian in Glasgow.

Wales international Ledley concedes that if they drop one more point it could be fatal to their hopes.

"We need to buck up as I don't think we can afford to drop any more points before the end of the season," he said.

Ledley has been one of the more consistent performers for the Parkhead side this season, something acknowledged by manager Neil Lennon.

But that did not stop the Welshman from issuing a battle-cry on behalf of the players to the club's increasingly frustrated supporters, who have watched their team win only three of their last 10 games in all competitions.

"We still believe and believe in the management, we just need to work harder," Ledley told BBC Scotland when asked about Celtic's hopes of winning the SPL back from Glasgow rivals Rangers.

"We didn't play anywhere near as well as we can and it wasn't good enough as a team.

"We should have created more chances and worked harder as a unit. We didn't even have a corner.

"We have got to give a bit of credit to Hibs. They defended well as a unit, worked hard, and made it difficult for us to break them down.

"The manager wasn't happy afterwards but we know we let ourselves and the supporters down with that performance."

The 24-year-old found the performance of his team even more galling because of the electrifying way they knocked Hibs out of the Scottish Communities League Cup only three days previously.

On that occasion, Celtic rattled four goals past the Edinburgh side .

"You can't play so well on Wednesday then go out and play that badly," suggested Ledley.

"We played unbelievable football at times on Wednesday but we didn't look anything like that on Saturday.

"We are all very disappointed in ourselves and our individual performances."

The run of league victories to which Ledley is pinning his hopes must begin with a trip to face in-form Motherwell next Sunday.

The Steelmen took advantage of the Parkhead side's slip-up in Glasgow with a 3-2 victory at Inverness to strengthen their grip on second place.

"I don't think a draw in any game is going to be good enough for us anymore - but obviously we all still believe and need to go out there and keep going," Ledley added.

"Right now, we need to get consistency into our game as I don't think we've had that so far this season.

"Obviously there are still a lot of games to go, including three against Rangers, so we're not going to give up. We'll fight to the end."