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  • Brendan Rodgers: Bhoys will embrace latest European challenge

    Brendan Rodgers: Bhoys will embrace latest European challenge

    By: Paul Cuddihy on 14 Feb, 2018 18:01

  • HAVING achieved their target of securing European football after Christmas, Brendan Rodgers’ side are now determined to extend that campaign even further.

    Zenit St Petersburg stand between Celtic and a place in the last 16 of the UEFA Europa League, and the Celtic manager knows that it’s going to be a tough task for his team to emerge successfully from the two-leg tie.

    However, the Hoops squad are embracing the challenge ahead, starting with the first leg at Celtic Park on Thursday night.

    Speaking at Lennoxtown today, the manager said: “We have to be realistic as always. There are some great teams in it and, of course, the nature of the competition means it’s going to be very difficult for us. We are going to get tested to the limits as to where we are at but, for us, it’s an exciting challenge.

    “We can focus in on these two games playing against a very good side with an excellent manager and it’s another game that will test us. We’ve always embraced every challenge and we’ve got our reward by getting here now. Hopefully, over the two games, we can perform well and get a result.

    “We know where we are at. The Champions League was tough for us but we’ve progressed again this year to finish third in the group. We are realists and know where we stand, but we want to be competitive.

    “Celtic is a great club, a huge club. The support really helps us in these games but we always respect that it’s a difficult challenge but we aim to be as competitive as we can be.

    “There will always be pressure if you are a Celtic manager or player. You want to do well for your supporters and get through to the last 16, so we have to do our very best. The noise level at Celtic Park is phenomenal. I’ve spoken to players from opposition teams and they haven't heard a noise like it."

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