Celtic will test Champions League's top sides, says Samaras

Celtic celebrate their Champions League qualifying win against Helsingborgs

Georgios Samaras insists Celtic can make life difficult for Europe's top teams in the Champions League.

Celtic are in pot four and could be drawn against teams of the calibre of Real Madrid.

But the Greek striker says no team will relish a trip to Celtic Park.

"It won't be easy for teams to come here and win, not only because we're a good team but because of the atmosphere," he told BBC Scotland.

Celtic have taken some famous scalps at home in the Champions League in previous years, and Samaras reckons that could happen again.

"If other teams think 'let's choose from pot four - Celtic because it will be easy' it will not," he warned.

"We're a young and talented team.

"We're going to fight for our chances and in football you never know what you can achieve."

A crowd of 55,000 roared Celtic into the group stage on Wednesday night and Samaras believes the supporters can help the side overcome more illustrious opponents.

"The atmosphere and support was absolutely amazing, almost a full house," Samaras added.

"Hopefully in the three home games in the group stage there will be a full house and the heat comes back."

The Greece international has at times cut a forlorn figure in a Celtic jersey, but is currently in a rich vein of form, something he puts down to his manager's influence.

"Lenny (Neil Lennon) took charge two years ago and immediately I felt the belief, the trust he has in my ability," he continued.

"It's not to do with my desire. It's something the manager has got out of me.

"We've improved a lot as a team in the last two years. We've worked hard and now we're back at the top level."

Samaras's team-mate Gary Hooper says the opportunity to play in the Champions League is a "dream come true".

Hooper's 30th-minute goal on Wednesday night against Helsingborgs effectively secured their passage to the group stage.

And the Englishman is savouring the prospect of testing himself against Europe's best.

"It's a massive competition, massive teams, massive players and now we're in the group stage against the best players in the world," he told BBC Scotland.

"You go and enjoy travelling to their stadiums and bringing them to our place.

"This is why I came here, and I think we've got a good team to go on and see what happens."

Follow Alasdair Lamont on Twitter.

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