Rodgers must change Tom Rogic's European position
Brendan Rodgers should be looking at a positional switch for Tom Rogic in Europe.
The big Australian leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to European football, as he continues to struggle against continental sides.
He’s a Wizard of Oz when playing domestically, but he hasn’t had the same success outside of Scottish football.
Yet, if Rodgers pulls him back into the middle of the pitch, he could change Rogic’s fortunes.
Rogic too deep for Europe
Everyone knows the 26-year-old has gifted feet with the ball. However, when it comes to Europe, he is finding it hard to stand out.
The reason for this is the physicality and energy required for his attacking midfield position.
If Rodgers pulls Rogic in further to make him a centre-mid, then Celtic will reap the benefits.
He has arguably the best passing ability at the club, and the position is less gruelling on his legs – something a man of his fitness needs to be aware of.
His most recent European performance against Salzburg was a poor outing. Salzburg’s defensive midfielders surrounded and pressed him right away, giving him no time on the ball whatsoever.
Nor was he able to run ahead of Edouard, who was playing as a hold-up player as his pace let him down.
Who to replace him?
With Rogic more central, someone like Callum McGregor or Ryan Christie could slot into the attacking midfield slot.
Both players have surreal engines and pace which is needed for that position. Of course, Christie’s injury could curtail that for now.
They can, however, both run ahead of Edouard when he is holding up play for knock-ons. This is something that was badly missed against Salzburg.
It’s also one thing fans can’t rely on Rogic doing.
There are downsides to this decision which includes the defensive side of Celtic’s game.
Rogic isn’t known for his tackling abilities, so there will need to be some cover in that regard.
Someone like Scott Brown or Olivier Ntcham would need to do that job role for two positions.
Hope isn’t lost on Rogic by any means, but he is starting to go missing in Europe which is important as he is a big-game player domestically.
Failure to be able to play in continental competition will harm his reputation and value.
It’s time for the Australian to step up and show that he is worthy of being part of Celtic’s European adventure.