Scottish Premiership - Johansen dreaming of Europe

New Celtic midfielder Stefan Johansen admits playing in the Champions League would be a dream come true.

PA Sport
Scottish Premiership - Johansen dreaming of Europe

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Stefan Johansen has signed a three-and-a-half year deal

The 23-year-old will get the chance to bed into Neil Lennon's team in time for the qualifiers in July and he cannot wait to sample the European atmosphere at Celtic Park.

"Everybody wants to play Champions League," he said. "When you are 13 and 14 you dream about playing in the Champions League.

"I saw the match against Barcelona in 2012 when it was 2-1 here. That game was unbelievable - the fans, the passion in the game.

"It's what every youngster dreams about. The first thing is to play in the national team and the second is to play in Europe with a big club.

"Now I am at one of Europe's biggest clubs so it's a dream come true."

The Norway international has joined the Hoops on a three-and-a-half-year from Norwegian champions Stromsgodset and admitted the move is a major step-up in his career.

But he did not appear to be the type of player to be overawed by expectations as he was introduced to the media on Wednesday.

"Football is all about pressure," he said. "You should always have pressure on you. We need to do our best in every match.

"Of course Celtic is a much bigger club than what you get in Norway but you get a little bit of the same from the press. The crowd should expect something from me, the media should expect something, the team-mates, but the biggest pressure I put is on myself.

"I improved a lot last season, 2012 was a good year for me but last season I had pressure on me. The fans and media were expecting something from me and I needed to prove I was capable of doing the same season again.

"We won the title and I made my debut in the national team, so it was a fantastic season and I really hope to continue. I'm going to work even harder here."

Some of Lennon's summer signings have struggled to adapt to Scottish football, notably forwards Teemu Pukki and Amido Balde.

But Johansen expressed little doubt that he would adapt to what he feels will be a more physical challenge.

"I'm a confident person because you need to believe in yourself," he said. "Of course it's a different type of football. Some of the away games are maybe harder than they are in Norway. But I will adapt to that. I have no worries about that, I just need to keep working hard."

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