Rennes forwards Ismaila Sarr and Mbaye Niang will miss Saturday’s match with Celtic. The important pair are on international duty playing in the African Cup of Nations.
However, the Bhoys will still be tested by a team on form.
Nevertheless, two key ingredients will not make the trip which doesn’t help assess the Hoops’ defensive side.
Ismaila Sarr and Mbaye Niang miss out
The Cameroon men are flying in the African Cup of Nations.
It’s a testament to their qualities that they are going so far in the competition. Niang featured in yesterday’s quarter final win against Benin in Egypt. The pair will now go through to the semi-final but the opponent is still to be determined.
Unfortunately, this means Sarr and Niang will not grace the field at Parkhead.
Both would have been a good test for the Celtic defenders, especially the newbies needing game time.
Christopher Jullien will be familiar with the Rennes side with his time at Toulouse, however.
For the other Celts remaining, there aren’t a lot of players left that featured in the 2015 friendly between the two.
This said, there are others in the French side that can cause problems.
Plus, the cup winners’ robust defence will be an ample test for the attacking element of Celtic.
Celtic attackers are under microscope
The Hoops may have got past an early scare on Tuesday against Sarajevo. Odsonne Edouard, Mikey Johnston and even Scott Sinclair got on the scoresheet.
However, the trio will have their work cut out for them on Saturday against les rouges et noirs.
Rennes are a decent defensive outfit and will require a lot of breaking down. They boast stars including centre-half Damien da Silva who signed a new contract
They have lost Rangers target and cup final goal scorer Mexer which is a blow.
Right-back Hamari Traore is a Cristian Gamboa type who can be exploited defensively but is equally great in attack and is very fast.
All things considered, Saturday’s friendly will be better than the usual yearly mundane served up at Celtic Park.