MILAN, Dec 4 (Reuters) - Celtic manager Gordon Strachan was pleased to reach the Champions League last 16 for the second successive season but was upset with his side's performance.
Celtic lost 1-0 at Group D winners AC Milan on Tuesday but still qualified after Shakhtar Donetsk, who needed a victory, were beaten 2-1 at home by Benfica.
'You probably don't want my thoughts on the game so I'll go on to one of the most enjoyable parts -- the fact we are through,' Strachan jokingly told a news conference.
'We'll go back to the hotel and enjoy it but we must do better away from home. There are one or two negatives I'm desperate to sort out.'
Celtic have an awful away record in the Champions League, losing 15 of 16 matches and drawing just once.
The Scottish champions barely threatened at San Siro and when Filippo Inzaghi scored midway through the second half, Strachan quickly tried to find out the Shakhtar score.
'I was OK until Milan scored then I started looking around for a bit of help and I got a thumbs up,' he said. 'I thought the game was dead, that's why I was annoyed to concede a goal.'
Former Manchester United midfielder Strachan would rather avoid English clubs in the first knockout round in February.
'For me personally, I've spent a lot of time in England. I want new arenas to play in,' he added. 'I think the next level would be to be a force away from home in Europe. We are a force at home.'
Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti was happy to win at home for the third time in Group D, in stark contrast to Serie A where they have yet to win at San Siro this season. Finishing top of the group was also important for the holders, he said.
'It depends on the draw and the team we meet but it is important to have the second leg at San Siro,' he added.
The last round of matches in Group D was brought forward by a week because Milan now travel to the Club World Cup in Japan.
'We have nine days to recover,' Ancelotti said looking ahead to the tournament, where injured Brazilian striker Ronaldo hopes to feature. 'We might have Ronaldo back.'