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By ESPN Staff

Strachan waiting for word from Pressley

Celtic manager Gordon Strachan could know on Monday if Steven Pressley will join the Parkhead side in January.

The former Hearts captain recently reached an 'amicable agreement' to leave the Edinburgh club in the wake of his criticism of majority shareholder Vladimir Romanov.

Pressley was invited into Celtic Park last Monday for an informal chat with Strachan, who briefly played for Coventry at the same time as the 33-year-old Scotland defender.

The manager said: 'Steven Pressley and I have known each other for a long, long time.

'We thought we would get together for a chat on Monday and it was great.

'We were sitting there talking about football and what we have been doing the last few years and seeing if there was something that could be done to get us working together again.

'It was nothing about finances, it was more along the lines of `it might be all right for you, it might be all right for me, so let's talk about it'.

'And Steven said he would get back to me in about a week's time.

'It was actually nice to chat to him again.'

Strachan's side were today drawn to face AC Milan in the last 16 of the Champions League, but more pressingly they face Rangers at Ibrox on Sunday.

Strachan's first Old Firm match as Celtic manager in August 2005 ended in a 3-1 defeat with red cards for captain Neil Lennon and midfielder Alan Thompson.

However, the Hoops boss believes there is new-found respect between the two Glasgow giants which will help Sunday's contest at Ibrox pass off relatively free of incident.

He said: 'We have equipped ourselves well in these games and apart from some disciplinary problems in the first game that I was involved in against them, we have been quite good at handling these games.

'To be fair, since I've been here, the two teams have handled it well and in a respectful manner.

'People might think that surprising but I feel there is a respect between the two clubs and the players.

'I think that has been shown in the games apart, as I say, from the first game I was in charge and hopefully that will continue.'

Celtic defender Mark Wilson reiterated his manager's belief that the fixture has mellowed recently, but the former Dundee United defender insists the game is still fiery enough.

He said: 'As the manager has said, it has quietened down over the last season or so.

'You want to keep both sets of 11 players on the pitch because it makes it a more interesting game.

'You will see tackles flying in and the occasional flare-up but there is respect there.

'There was maybe a lot of fighting outwith the players and outwith the stadium.

'And while I think both clubs have done tremendously well to calm that down it doesn't mean the passion is out of the game.

'Both sets of fans are still great when they go to each other's ground and it will be no different on Sunday.'