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RODGERS’ EUROPA GOAL

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OLIVIER NTCHAM is Celtic’s top Premiership scorer after five games this season – with TWO goals!

The champions have netted only five times in their outings with Tom Rogic, Odsonne Edouard and Dedryck Boyata claiming the others while the team have fired blanks in the defeat against Hearts at Tynecastle and the draw with St Mirren in Paisley.

At the same stage last term, the Hoops had thumped in 12 strikes on their way to a 73-goal league total.

Brendan Rodgers has now ordered his players to focus on their finishing, starting tomorrow night against Rosenborg in their opening tie in Europa League Group B at Parkhead.

MATCHWINNER…Dedryck Boyata claims the only goal of the game against Hamilton Accies.

He said: “When we played them before, they sat in deep. In the first game, in particular, they were very deep and we saw a lot of the ball, but couldn’t quite make the breakthrough.

“They took the lead with a good goal and, to be fair, our response to that was excellent. We expect them to be compact, to be tight and so it’s up to us.

“This is an area where we have to significantly improve on. We need to get back to creating more opportunities. We have to demand a bit more from ourselves at that final third of the pitch. We have kept four clean sheets, but we have to do more in the attacking areas.

“And it’s just not the attackers. That’s everyone. The speed of our game from behind, playing our passes quicker, playing forward and also taking more responsibility at the top end of the field.

“That is something we’ve been working on and something we want to take into this game.”

HEAD BHOY…Tom Rogic following his header against Livingston on the opening league day of the season.

Rodgers’s side beat the Norwegians 3-1 in Glasgow and earned a goalless draw in Trondheim in the second qualifying round of the Champions League.

Rodgers added: “We would like to start with a great crowd, we want the stands to be full – everyone, of course, wants the Champions League – but this is still a very important competition for us.

“I would say to the Celtic supporters to come out, give us your great support because that it is vital for us to do well.

“Playing in Europe is an important part of our season, for the development of our team, the individual players. It is something we have benefited from over the last couple of seasons.

“There are some really good teams in the competition, we are in a good group and we would like to start with a good performance and a win. So we are looking forward to the game.

“I look forward to these nights. Part of the attraction of coming here was the possibility to playing in Europe with Celtic and no matter what competition it’s been in, it’s been absolutely fantastic.

“For me, it’s the start of another important campaign for us between now and Christmas. Our aim is to play well and show the experience we’ve got from our experiences over the last two years.”

 
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