Football - Lennon shuffles pack ahead of Juve test

Neil Lennon will ring the changes against Inverness on Saturday as he gears up for the "biggest game" of his managerial career against Juventus.

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Celtic manager Neil Lennon will make changes against Inverness

The Celtic manager says he will hand game time to some of his fringe players as he bids to keep his core personnel fresh for the last-16 clash with the Italian giants on Tuesday.

But Lennon denied that his side's 15-point lead over Caley at the top of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League makes his decision any easier. "It is a balancing act but I will make changes," he said.

"I have got Juventus in mind. It is the biggest game we have had here since Gordon Strachan's time and the biggest game of some of the players' career, and certainly my managerial career. I don't want to take too many chances tomorrow.

"We have got a cushion but that is no guarantee you are going to win the league and it is not the reason I am making changes. If the gap was three points, I would probably still do it and take the gamble."

Juventus are sitting three points clear of Napoli at the top of Serie A but Lennon does not believe they will be a more difficult prospect than Barcelona, who were famously defeated by the Hoops in the group stage at Parkhead in November.

"Juventus are a formidable team, a daunting prospect, but I think the players have been looking at this game for quite a while and I am looking for a big night from them," said Lennon.

"We have been overdosing on them the last few weeks in terms of DVD analysis.

"Juventus and Barcelona are two different sides, two different mentalities. I think Juventus are more pragmatic. Barcelona do a lot of things off the cuff because they are so good.

"Juventus are very rigid in their formation, three at the back, one sitting and two wing-backs getting forward. They are a little bit more defensive-minded than Barcelona and they will be very difficult to break down although they probably don't have the flair or quality in forward areas than Barcelona."

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