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‘BE PATIENT,’ URGES HOOPS BOSS

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BRENDAN RODGERS believes the Celtic support will be patient with the team, tonight as the Hoops attempt to take another step forward in Europe after last week’s false start.
Gibraltar’s Lincoln Red Imps, implausibly defending a one-goal first leg advantage, are likely to pack their defence in an effort to frustrate the Hoops.
Rodgers said: “The message to the players is similar to the supporters. It is that first 20 minutes, if we don’t score a goal, then you have to be patient and for that you need the support.
“But, thankfully, I understand the Celtic supporters, they understand the game, they know football and patience is something they have been accustomed to. 
“You can be an attacking team, but there are times when the ball can’t go forward and it has to be circulated.
“Our team will always be set up to create and score goals, but if it doesn’t come the message is, they just have to be patient because you might take one hour or 70 minutes in any game before you break a team down and then you can score two, three, four, five goals in the last 20 minutes.
“So, if the game requires patience, then I am sure the Celtic fans will support the team.”
Rodgers revealed that defender Erik Sviatchenko “is fine” after suffering a head knock in the first-half of the friendly win against Wolfsburg on Saturday although midfielders Nir Bitton and Stefan Johansen are “probably unavailable”. Both will be assessed before kick-off.
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