NAT PHILLIPS thinks the pressure of playing for Celtic will bring out the best in him, with the on-loan Liverpool defender saying he is more than equipped to deal with the expectation that comes along with representing the club.

Phillips has played in some huge games while at Anfield in both the English Premier League and the Champions League, and has also experienced title races during loan spells in Germany and in The Championship with Bournemouth.

He is now relishing the opportunity to play for another club where silverware is the priority over survival, and he says he is more than ready to meet the challenges that lie ahead during his time in Scotland.

“With anything in life, you want to be moving towards an end goal,” Phillips said.

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“It’s good that Celtic have that here. They want to be winning trophies. They’re not just looking to survive as some teams might be in other areas of football.

“In Germany I had that with Stuttgart – it was promotion or nothing in the Bundesliga 2. When I went to Bournemouth we had the end goal of winning promotion and at Liverpool there were high demands there and it’s the same here. I quite enjoy that, and it brings the best out of me.

“It just makes everything more meaningful when you’ve got something to strive towards.

“In the time I was playing at Liverpool it was a bit of a strange period, because there was a bit of an injury crisis then.

“I got a decent run of games at the end of that season. There were three Champions League games, and some pretty important ones in the league to push for the Champions League places.

“Certainly in that season where there were all those injuries, there was a decent amount of pressure on us, and I enjoyed it.

“I quite enjoy having that pressure and feeling like you’ve got to rise to the occasion, and when you do win those games and you perform and do well, it makes it that much sweeter.

"So I come here with experience of playing under pressure and dealing with it."

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Phillips sat out the recent Old Firm derby at Ibrox after arriving during that week as the transfer window drew to a close, but he says he is now ready for action.

“I’m now just itching to go and get into the games,” he said.

“I’m fit and ready to play now. I have had two weeks training under my belt so we’ll see if I can get a game at the weekend. But I’m feeling good.

“The Rangers game just came a bit soon, that’s all it was. There was some talk about maybe playing but the important thing was the team got the win.”