Brendan to make ‘a few changes just to re-energise the team’ – Ajer, Weah and Edouard to start?

CELTIC have picked themselves up, dusted down the disappointment of Thursday night and will be ready to go again at both Rugby Park tomorrow and the Mestalla Stadium next week.

Brendan Rodgers yesterday while reflecting on the 2-0 defeat to Valencia was more interested in looking forward to the next two matches and the opportunities that they present for his players.

The Celtic manager will make a few changes to his side to freshen things up after the Valencia game and to take into account the playing surface. Jozo Simunovic seldom plays on these plastic pitches so expect Kris Ayer to return and both Timo Weah and Odsonne Edouard could start tomorrow.

“The beauty of this group is that we have always tried to be honest in reflections on the game knowing there’s another game soon.

“We didn’t show our true face, but that’s how it goes. We now have to get ready for Sunday,” Brendan said to the media.

“We’ll look at how everyone is but we’ll make a few changes just to re-energise the team.

“It’s tough with a game a few days later but these boys have been magnificent in the last two and a half years with how they pick themselves up.

“It’s a credit to the guys. We won’t be feeling sorry for ourselves. We’ll re-focus and get back to how we usually play,” The Celtic boss stated.

Rodgers is well aware that Kilmarnock have been particularly tricky opponents for Celtic since their current manager took charge of the Ayrshire side and on our last two visits to Rugby Park we’ve come away empty handed with the home side recording a 1-0 and a 2-1 win over the Champions.

“It’s one where Stevie Clarke’s teams are compact and tight and there’s never normally many goals there on a slow surface.

“The pitch can affect the speed of the game, but we have to deal with that and be a strong and committed team with good quality,” Brendan said.

On the trip to Spain that follows the crucial game at Rugby Park, Rodgers was asked about Valencia being able to bring on as a second half substitute Goncalo Guedes, their £35million signing.

“It’s a different sport isn’t it,” Brendan replied. “We have to get on with it and just do our very best. We can be better – it’s as simple as that.”

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About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email

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