Celtic need to keep faith in Tom Rogic; he even showed his ability during dismal night

By John Reid

November 7, 2020

There is no doubt that Neil Lennon will make a few changes for Celtic’s game against Motherwell on Sunday. It would be absurd not to expect changes from a team that lost 4-1 to Sparta Prague.

There is one player that should not be dropped though, as recently he has had a positive impact on the team, even during that dismal display against Sparta – Tom Rogic.

At the heart of one good moment of game

Celtic had very little to cheer about against Sparta, but Rogic was at the heart of the one good moment of the night, Leigh Griffiths’s goal.

His shot was saved by the goalkeeper, and the rebound was rifled home by Griffiths. Indeed, Whoscored.Com discloses that Rogic was one of the few Celtic players to contribute in an attacking sense on the night, as he has two shots on target, more than any other player in the team.

By Celtic’s standards that isn’t a lot – but it is more than anybody else managed. He also had a pass accuracy of 90%, the third best in the team, and that is one of the most important attributes of his game.

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That passing ability will be vital at Fir Park. Celtic need to get Rogic on the ball as often as possible. That will give the team the best chance of winning the game.

If you look at Celtic’s game against Aberdeen in the league a few weeks ago, which ended 3-3, as revealed by WhoScored.Com Rogic had three key passes in that game  – two of those led to goals. Against Sparta, he was limited to one. Rogic needs to be given the freedom to dictate play. It will be the job of the other players in the team to create that space to allow Rogic to flourish.

Can’t forget about semi-final performance

Just because the entire team played poorly on Thursday for the most part, you can’t forget about how well Rogic played in the Scottish Cup semi-final against Aberdeen. The 27-year-old dictated the game for almost the entire first-half.

Celtic midfielder Tom Rogic and manager Neil Lennon / (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

That is what Rogic is capable of doing, especially against Scottish Premiership sides. It might take a moment of magic to get the victory at Fir Park. Rogic could be the man for that.

He has previous for memorable moments in that stadium. Who can forget his winning goal against Motherwell in a 4-3 victory in 2016? More of the same on Sunday would be most welcomed for this beleaguered Celtic side.

In other news, Neil Lennon should utilise an emerging Celtic midfield trio.