JEREMIE Frimpong has admitted he is determined to help Celtic beat Sarajevo in the Europa League play-off next week so he can make amends for missing out on the group stages of the competition last season.

Frimpong was exceptional for the Parkhead club in their nervous 1-0 win over Riga in a one-off third round qualifying tie in the Skonda Stadium in Latvia on Thursday night.

The teenage wing back caused the home team all sorts of problems down the right flank after replacing James Forrest in the first-half and set up substitute Mohamed Elyounoussi for the late winner.

The Dutch youngster’s performance has made him a strong contender to start in their match in Bosnia and Herzegovina next week – and he is certainly determined to be involved.

The 19-year-old didn’t feature in the epic encounters with Cluj, Lazio and Rennes in the 2019/20 because he broke into the first team after the Celtic squad that was submitted to UEFA in August.

He featured for Neil Lennon’s side the first leg of the last 32 tie against Copenhagen in Denmark and is keen to be involved in the group stages this term.

“I would really love to be in the group stages,” he said. “Last season, I was watching the Europa League group stages and just to be in it would be amazing. I’d really like it.

“I didn’t go to Italy for the Lazio game, but I remember the goal that Olivier (Ntcham) scored in the last minute and I went to Rennes.

“The Europa League is a big competition and I feel we have a team that can do really well in it.

“I have always thought the Europa League is a good tournament because there are some teams from the Champions League who now come into it and they are top quality.

“Obviously, we would have liked Champions League, but Europa League is still a good tournament and we want it.”

“It would still be exciting for the players even though there will be no fans there. We would just have to adjust to it as we have been doing. There’s nothing we can do about the situation, we can just try to do our best to win games.”

Frimpong and his team mates face a difficult task beating Sarajevo – 2-1 winners over Buducnost Podgorica on Thursday night – in the Kosovo City Stadium next week.

However, the former Manchester City kid is confident both he and his team mates can cope with the pressure on them to perform in the one-off encounter - and all the big games they face this season.

“I feel like every match and every period is important,” he said. “It’s not this week and that week. Every week, every match is important. This is a big year for us, so they are all the same.

“Obviously, we go into every match knowing we must win. That is the mindset. I feel like every team plays well against us because everyone we face turns it on and it really challenges us.

“Obviously, on the pitch, teams want it more. Domestically, we are the champions and teams want to beat the champions, that’s normal. But we like games like this and facing teams that challenge us, so yeah, it’ll be a good game.”

Frimpong praised his fellow Celtic players for helping him to make such an impact in Riga this week and hailed Elyounoussi for converting his cross from the right wing to send them through.

“I feel like I have to do my bit for the team,” he said. “Obviously I want to help to get us through. We had to get a win and that’s what we did. In the end, we had to be patient as we just knew that a goal was going to come. We were starting to create and, eventually, we took one of the chances.

“Mo's a top, top player. He’s played in the Premier League and his international team, that says everything. Our bench could start the games. We have such a good squad and it makes a difference because everyone who goes onto the pitch is good.

“I try and talk to everyone. I’m the youngest, so yeah, I’ll ask everyone things. What’s it like? What was it like doing that? They will tell me things to help me.”