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Forrest: Thumping St Johnstone showed Celtic's killer instinct

The winger said Neil Lennon drove his side on to get more goals in the 7-0 win on Saturday.

Forrest says the opening day win boosts confidence.
Forrest says the opening day win boosts confidence. SNS Group

Celtic winger James Forrest believes the side's 7-0 win over St Johnstone shows the side's killer instinct and says Neil Lennon is driving them on to attack.

The champions unfurled the league flag on Saturday and then made a statement of intent with a clinical display at Celtic Park.

Four different players were on the scoresheet and St Johnstone's defence was under pressure from start to finish in a dream start to the title defence for Lennon and his players.

While some had questioned whether the side would undergo a radical transformation when the manager succeeded Brendan Rodgers last season, Forrest said recent displays show that Lennon is pushing for attacking football.

"We were 3-0 up the other day and he wanted to make sure we would go out and win the second half as well," the winger said. 

"You saw that for 90 minutes on Saturday that we kept going and wanted as many goals as possible but the clean sheet as well.

"I think we've got a lot of good attacking players in the squad and the boys coming off the bench on Saturday got on the scoresheet as well. 

"That's a real confidence boost for everyone in the squad."

Forrest put the early-season form down to work on the training ground and a benefit of having to play in early Champions League qualifiers.

"We've had a full pre-season and the European games have started quick as well so I think the boys have adjusted to what the manager wants," he said. "You see the performances we've been putting in lately have been right up there. He just wants us to keep improving."

The home win set the team up nicely for their next Champions League challenge - travelling to Romania for the first leg of their tie against CFR Cluj. 

Forrest said the team would head east with plenty of positivity but was under no illusions about the test to come.

"I think whenever you beat any team, and St Johnstone made it hard for us last year, you take confidence," he said.

"On Saturday we were ruthless and kept creating chances. It was one of those days where the goals kept coming.

"It's different in Europe and going away to Cluj it's going to be a difficult game but we've got the players in the squad to deal with it and we're hoping to get a positive result."

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