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BENKOVIC GETS PASS MARKS

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BRENDAN RODGERS will push Leicester City for a decision on Filip Benkovic’s loan deal, as CQN reported earlier this week.

The Midlands side can recall the classy 21-year-old Croatian centre-half during the January transfer window although boss Claude Puel has already stated he would be satisfied if the player, who cost £13million from Dinamo Zagreb in the summer, continued at Parkhead.

Rodgers is keen for Benkovic to remain in partnership with Dedryck Boyata at the heart of the champions’ rearguard and will press for an answer from the Premier League outfit.

The defender put in another impressive 90 minutes in the vital 1-0 win over Rosenborg in Trondheim last night as the Scots edged to within a point of qualifying for the knock-out stages of the competition.

Benkovic completed an impressive 83 of his 89 passes which is a 93 per cent success rate.

He dominated the Norwegians’ star man Nicklas Bendtner and, along with Boyata, was the rock for many of the Hoops’ counter-attacks.

The defender is now 90 minutes away from winning his first medal at the Parkhead outfit when he will almost certainly team up with the Belgian international against Aberdeen at Hampden on Sunday.

Unless something drastic happens, Benkovic will also face RB Salzburg in matchday six of the Europa League Group B encounter in Glasgow on December 13 when a solitary point would be sufficient for Rodgers’ men to reach the last 32 .

That would guarantee European football for Celtic in 2019 and the Hoops gaffer is determined for the smooth back-four operator to be in position for the Continental challenge.

 
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