NEIL Lennon has warned Celtic fans that unfurling inflammatory banners in the Parkhead club’s potentially incendiary Europa League rematch with Lazio in Rome on Thursday night will tarnish their international reputation.

Celtic and Lazio are facing UEFA punishment following the conduct of their supporters in the first Group E meeting between the two sides in Glasgow last month.

Both clubs have been charged with illicit chanting while the treble treble winners are also facing disciplinary action for an illicit banner.

The Green Brigade displayed a “Brigate Verde” tifo with before kick-off – a reference to the Brigate Rosse or Red Brigades left-wing terrorist organisation which was active in Italy during the 1970s and 1980s.

READ MORE: Celtic and Lazio hit with UEFA charges after Europa League match

During the game, one flag showed a picture of former Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini hanging upside down next to the words “follow your leader” while another banner read “Lazio vaffanculo ” – which translates as “Lazio f*** off ”.

Around 9,000 Celtic fans are expected to travel to Rome next week to see the game in the Stadio Olimpico – which will have sections closed after UEFA found Lazio fans guilty of racist behaviour in their home match against Rennes at the start of last month.

Celtic have held talks with both UEFA and Lazio about security ahead of the game on Thursday night amid fears the ultra element of the home support – who were filmed doing Nazi salutes in Glasgow city centre before the last match - may attempt to attack travelling fans.

Lennon is optimistic the match in Rome will pass off without incident in either the city or the stadium – but he has admitted that provocative banners might inflame the delicate situation and damage Celtic’s image.

READ MORE: Celtic's Europa League opponents Lazio hit with partial stadium closure by UEFA

“In the main we’ve got a great reputation for travelling in Europe and I want that to continue, for the fans to go and enjoy the experience, and be careful, obviously,” he said.

“I don’t think there is any animosity between the two clubs. This is something that is separate from the football and we want to quell that as quickly as possible before we, or anyone else, travels out there. Try and make some friends while we’re out there rather than create any animosity.

“I’m not going to come out and criticise our supporters. In the main they are good. We do have a great reputation as a club worldwide and we want to maintain that.

"I can’t speak on behalf of those people with the banners, but it doesn’t do the club any good. It doesn’t help. That’s all I can say on it.”

READ MORE: Bank-jobs, drugs and killings: the real face of Lazio’s ultras

Lennon admitted he may speak to his players about how to react if they are targeted for racist abuse in the Stadio Olimpico following a routine meeting with match officials and representatives of European football’s governing body on the day of the game.

“There's protocols in place now,” he said. “Whether I need to speak to the players or not, I'll take a gauge off our club officials on that. There's a meeting on the morning of the game with the referees, fourth official and UEFA delegates so we'll get a steer from that. Then if I need to speak to the players, I will.”