Beware the fighting dog, warns Nakamura

Celtic playmaker Shunsuke Nakamura has labelled AC Milan star Rino Gattuso a “fighting dog” ahead of their midfield battle in Tuesday’s Champions League clash at Parkhead.

Celtic playmaker Shunsuke Nakamura has labelled AC Milan star Rino Gattuso a “fighting dog” ahead of their midfield battle in Tuesday’s Champions League clash at Parkhead.

Gattuso, a former Rangers player, flies into Glasgow this afternoon ahead of the first leg of their last-16 clash with the Bank of Scotland Premier League champions.

In an interview for Japanese television, Nakamura, who played in Italy with Reggina, said:

“They are a big club with international players in every position and they’ve won the league many times. I played against them many times when I was at Reggina and they seemed almost impossible to beat.

“They are very strong and have many intelligent players who know their football. Gattuso is like a fighting dog. Kaka is fast and tough. Dida, I think, is the best goalkeeper in the world.”

However, the Japan international, who scored a trademark free-kick in Saturday’s 2-1 win over Aberdeen at Pittodrie, believes Milan’s main threat will come from midfielder Andrea Pirlo.

He said: “I think the key to Milan is Pirlo.

“He positions himself in front of the back four and makes accurate passes – he can turn the tide with one play. They are very good at that kind of counter-attacking.

“Milan will go on if we can’t stop Pirlo.”

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