BRENDAN RODGERS heaped praise upon his players for their excellent performances in his record of six wins and a draw against Sevco Rangers.
The Celtic boss is delighted at the manner the team have performed with quality and skill for a high percentage of those seven contests.
And he is looking for some of the same at Paradise in today’s High Noon showdown.
Rodgers, of course, got off to a flying start with the 5-1 walloping of the Ibrox side in the opening Premiership encounter in the east end of Glasgow in the previous campaign.
He admitted: “I just think about the forthcoming game, but Celtic have played well in the majority of our meetings with them.
“Even in the 1-1 draw at Parkhead last season, we should have won it, despite not playing so well.
“You have to give credit to the mentality of our players because they’ve played with no fear in these matches whether it has been at home or away or at Hampden and that’s important.
“Because of that lack of fear, we’ve been able to go out and play very well.
“If you’ve played a team seven times, lost six and got away with a draw in the other one, then you can probably never admit it, but subconsciously there will be an eerie feeling.
“But we never feel that just because we’ve played well and won most of our games against them, we can take anything for granted.
“We have to be really hungry for success every time we play and that’s what we’ll be aiming for.”
Rodgers reckons the Govan team have gone back to basics under caretaker coach Graeme Murty and is pleased for him that he has got the role until the end of the term.
The pair were at Reading together, but, while the Hoops gaffer believes Murty may have changed things at the club, he’s fully intent on ensuring absolutely nothing changes in terms of results.
He added: “They play more direct than they did under Mark Warburton and Pedro Caixinha.
“Graeme’s gone back to basics a bit more, to give some comfort to the players. The previous two managers wanted to build the game.
“But, maybe now he has the job and he has more time, that’s maybe something he’ll want to look at.
“For me, though, it is just about getting the three points and playing well.
“We want to show we still have that hunger to finish off the season.
“Of course, if it does go to 14 points, it is a big lead, but I wouldn’t think so much about it at the moment.”
NEW CQN PODCAST OUT NOW! CHRISTMAS JUMPERS FOR GOALPOSTS
Paul John Dykes and Kevin Graham are joined by Celtic authors, Stephen Sullivan and Stevie Murray for a special festive episode – Christmas Jumpers for Goal-Posts.
Stephen Sullivan is a former Celtic View reporter who wrote the much-lauded Sean Fallon biography, ‘Iron Man’. He is now the editor of FIFA.com.
Stevie Murray has now written two books on Celtic – ‘Ten Men Won The League’ and ‘Kenny of the Celtic’ – and he is a respected and authoritative voice on the club.
Treat yourself to a signed copy of Jim Craig – Right Back to 67 and you will receive a copy of That Season on Paradise signed by Bertie Auld, just order the Jim Craig book at CQNbookstore.co.uk and we’ll do the rest…