Champions League: Celtic losing to Lincoln 'would be biggest-ever shock'

Lincoln Red Imps captain Roy Chipolina
Roy Chipolina also captained Gibraltar against Scotland
Champions League qualifying second round, first leg: Lincoln Red Imps v Celtic
Venue: Victoria Stadium, Gibraltar Date: Tuesday 12 July Kick-off: 19:00 BST
Coverage: Live on BBC Radio Scotland, live text on BBC Sport website

Lincoln Red Imps captain Roy Chipolina believes a victory over Celtic would represent one of the biggest shocks in European football history.

The part-timers from Gibraltar host the Scottish champions on Tuesday in the first leg of their Champions League second qualifying round tie.

"I think, arguably, it would be one of football's biggest upsets in Europe," the defender told BBC Scotland.

"We only became semi-professional three years ago."

Celtic in contrast, Chipolina pointed out, had been playing for many years - and "been very competitive" - in European competition.

"Everyone is excited," he said. "It is an amazing tie. The only word I can use to describe it is surreal.

"It doesn't really get much bigger than Celtic. And it's not just the club - I think the whole of Gibraltar is looking forward to this match."

Brendan Rodgers is all smiles during Celtic training in Gibraltar
Brendan Rodgers expects a 'tricky' tie in Gibraltar

Chipolina captained the Gibraltar side that played Scotland in the recent Euro 2016 qualifiers, his national team shipping 56 goals in 10 matches during the campaign.

However, as Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers prepares to lead the club competitively for the first time, the Northern Irishman is taking nothing for granted.

"They're always tricky ties," said the former Liverpool boss. "But our players have worked tirelessly over the last 20 days since we've been together and I've been delighted with the improvement of the fitness aspect of it and the tactical aspect of it.

"We've still got a long way to go, but this game presents us with an opportunity we have to take."

Red Imps defeated Flora Tallinn of Estonia to secure a visit of Celtic to the artificial surface at the 2,000-capacity Victoria Stadium.

"We've watched Lincoln play and understand they're very workmanlike," Rodgers added.

"They've won over the course of two games to get through to play us.

"So we'll give them that respect, but our focus is really very much on ourselves. It's a job that we need to do over two legs.

"The pitch and the heat will always make it a little bit more difficult, but we'll be ready for the whistle to blow."

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