Patrick Roberts is away on tour at the moment with Manchester City, and despite using twenty one players during the weekend game with Tottenham, Roberts didn’t leave the bench.
Well, he’s got an important champions League play off later this month, and presumably Guardiola got a text off Rogers asking him to leave him out.
Rogers said publicly;
“Pat would be amazing for here,”
“I think everyone could see that.
“But it all goes down to, one, Manchester City and how they see his future there. He has gone away on tour with them and got some game time. They will make a decision after that.”
I think they’ve made that perfectly clear already.
As such, there seems to be a renewed interest in the player from Celtic, as it appears Manchester City don’t want him, but I suppose the player had to see that for himself.
Now he should stop arsing about and get back home. where he’s wanted.
Of course, the game tomorrow is too soon for Roberts to be the matchwinner, so that responsibility falls on someone else.
At the weekend , James Forrest, the much maligned winger who is odds on favourite to be the next fans scapegoat , got a boost from the manager, who thankfully ignores what our kestrel drinking pit bull owning support think.
“James was outstanding.
“He has played up front as a young player and gave the team great fluency.
“I don’t know how Leigh is – I haven’t seen him since we left yesterday – but James proved he can come in if Leigh doesn’t make it.
“You are always having to try things.
“During the week we played Tom Rogic there and it wasn’t quite as fluent. For James it was more natural, for him to spin behind and come underneath.
“He was good at turning in tight spaces and can do that naturally as he has played there as a youngster and even occasionally in the first team for Celtic.
Another who will, or at least should be, important tomorrow night is Calum MacGregor, who was missed in the first leg.
Again, there was reassurance from the boss.
“Callum doesn’t need to prove anything to me.
“He has shown he is good at scoring, pressing. He is a fantastic young player with the quality to score and create goals.”
“Callum is always in my thinking. He has really grown within this squad.”
It’s gone quiet ahead of the game, as has been the norm this season so far, but Scott Brown couldn’t help himself.
….we want Champions League football,”
“This club deserves it and now we need to go and try and get it. The Europa League is not in our thinking, we want to get into the Champions League. This is the big one. This is a cash windfall for the club as well and this pushes us on to the next level yet again.
“If we can get into it two years in a row it’s great for the club and great for the players’ confidence as well.
“This is a totally different Celtic team from any that I have played in before. We have that belief that we can go anywhere and score goals, even when we are playing against some of the top teams in the world. We played against Manchester City away last season and pressed them up the park, made them make mistakes and we got a goal from that.
“It is totally different from the old Celtic where we used to sit back and get 12 per cent of the ball against Barcelona, although we won that game 2-1. It is a different manager with a different philosophy and he believes we have enough energy that we can go and press teams and create chances and we have good players as well.
“There’s a belief, even from the fans as well they believe we can go through whether we are playing at home or away. That’s brought in from the manager and his backroom staff. That’s been battered into us, to relax and take the ball under pressure when there are two or three men on you and keep possession when you are away from home.”
Things did seem to click a little better at Sunderland, and the key there may have been Calum MacGregor, the vital link in the midfield.
Tomorrow in Trondheim we should see a more Celtic approach, and with Leigh Griffiths leading the line, goals will come.
The trick is to make sure they are all ours.
Rosenborg will be without international defender Tore Reginiussen, but rules say they can bring in a replacement.
They’ve an international winger, Pal andre Helland who didn’t play in the first game who is ready to return to the team, so it looks like tomorrows game will be entirely different from last weeks.
If Celtic play like Celtic, we’ll go through.
Supporters have made the headlines over the last couple of days. first we had the attack on the newsagents in Hendon, and then this odd video of Celtic fans singing about Lee Rigby, the Army drummer murdered by a couple of extremists.
Tommy whatever his name is, the EDL agent provocatuer has offered £1,000 for the identification of each supporter in the video.
There have been no takers, and theres a nagging little uncertainty about this video that I can’t shake.
Is it just that the Scottish accents seem a little too pronounced ?
Anyway, I’m not trying to defend them, or even excuse them.
Its not the image I’d like to see portrayed of the club anywhere, and its not the usual behaviour of Celtic fans abroad.
And I’m willing to bet that Tommy’s money is safe. The online disgust at the “Celtic fans ” actions would have led to them being identified, and as far as I can see they haven’t been.
Whichever way you look at it though, our reputation is taking a hammering, and we need to watch ourselves. The media need little or no excuse to point the finger at us.
I’ve also noticed that a few supporters are pulling out of the home Cup ticket scheme.
Rangers Tax Case is talking about crowdfunding a judicial review, and beginning to plan it.
This can’t be good news, as it points towards the club doing nothing about the recent decision by the beaks to move on.
That is unacceptable.
But we’ll have a clearer picture on this by the end of the week, although I have to admit it doesn’t look good.
Ian Cathro has become the first managerial casualty of the new term, he’s left Hearts.
Which EBT recipient will land the job ?
This season, which promised so much in the summer, is beginning to fall apart.
All we can do is support the lads on the pitch, and push them towards that magical ten in a row.
Then we should retire undefeated.