Israeli midfielder Beram Kayal has insisted that Celtic can still win the Scottish Premier League title this season despite trailing rivals Rangers by ten points.
It has been a troubled start for the Hoops who have been defeated three times in their opening ten matches.
Last weekend they needed a remarkable second-half comeback to seal a 3-3 draw away to Kilmarnock after trailing by three goals at half-time.
Beleaguered boss Neil Lennon has come in for criticism following his side’s poor run of results, but he was handed a boost this week when Israeli international Kayal signed a contract extension that will keep him at the Parkhead club until the summer of 2015.
And the midfielder says Celtic must now target victory in all their matches, starting with Sunday’s visit of Aberdeen, as they look to claw back Rangers’ huge advantage.
“If I didn’t believe I wouldn’t be here,” Kayal said.
“It’s a long season. Remember, last season we lost a match and then went undefeated for 14 games so why not do that again. If we think about the future we must start to win every game.
“Always, I believe in putting all my focus on the next game and not the whole season. But the league starts now and we want everyone here at the club to start winning matches.
“I think the point we took on Saturday is where we start again to fight in every game and win matches.
“After the way we came back in the second half, everyone now has confidence to come back and win games. We believe.”
Celtic were without Kris Commons, Gary Hooper and Georgios Samaras for their 1-1 draw with Rennes in Thursday’s Europa League match in France through injury but the trio could return to face Craig Brown’s Aberdeen on Sunday.
After a poor start to the season the Dons have won their past two matches as they climbed away from the relegation zone.
The Hoops could find themselves 13 points off the top by the time they take to the pitch on Sunday if Rangers can defeat Hearts in the day’s early kick-off match at Tynecastle.
The Ibrox club’s nine-match winning run came to an end last weekend when Ally McCoist’s side were held to a 1-1 draw by St Mirren.
Hearts have won their past four matches at Tynecastle, including a 2-0 victory over Celtic at the beginning of October.
But Rangers will be looking to make amends after Paulo Sergio’s side held the champions to a 1-1 draw on the opening day of the season.
Manager McCoist will have virtually a full squad to pick from, apart from on-loan Kyle Bartley who remain sidelined with a knee injury.
Elsewhere on Saturday, high flying Motherwell will aim to hold on to second spot as they welcome Kilmarnock to Fir Park.
The bottom two clash as Inverness Caledonian Thistle take on Dunfermline at the Caledonian Stadium.
St Mirren will want to build on their point away to Rangers last weekend as they face struggling Hibernian at New St Mirren Park.
St Johnstone will have to adapt to life after Derek McInnes, who left the club to join Bristol City, with a match away to Dundee United.