Brendan Rodgers had plenty of interesting things to say about Celtic on Tuesday.
As we’ve already covered, the Hoops boss offered a pretty positive injury update concerning the likes of Reo Hatate and Cameron Carter-Vickers. At last, our dire injury situation appears to be improving.
Rodgers also spoke more generally about where his team currently find themselves. Things have been far from ideal at Celtic Park in recent months, although the derby win at Ibrox just prior to the international break certainly lifted the mood.
Celtic‘s boss was in a bullish mood as he made the kind of prediction you would normally only hear at the end of a successful campaign. It related to the recent goalless draw against St. Johnstone — a game Rodgers reckons he has felt something like before.
“There was a game when I was here the first time that really crystallized everything,” he said, in a chat with Celtic TV.
“That was the Gibraltar game when we lost. For me, the St. Johnstone game will be that. I’m pretty sure I’ll look back at the end of the season and that game crystallized some of the items where we needed to be better.
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“Within the game, within the structure, mentality. Then obviously we were able to go on and get a very good result.
“So, for me, we’re going forward now into an exciting part of the season. [We’ve got] some more players back, but we have to really consolidate that.”
Make no mistake about it, those are pretty revealing quotes from the boss. He feels “pretty sure” that the St. Johnstone game will be viewed as a positive for this Celtic team over time.
The 1-0 defeat to Lincoln Red Imps in Rodgers’ first competitive match as Hoops boss was a really bad one at the time. Yet, we romped to victory in the second leg a week later. Nowadays, nobody really talks about it.
Judging from his comments, the loss was a big moment in the making of the team that would go on to win the ‘Invincible Treble’ ten months later. If he feels the Saints draw can have a similar galvanising effect, then we should be in for a treat.
Celtic Park will be a much happier place for this Saturday’s game against Dundee than it was three weeks prior. Let’s hope the team can put on a show and back up their manager’s words.