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‘WE NEED TO SHOW OUR QUALITIES,’ RODGERS

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BRENDAN RODGERS is taking nothing for granted when Celtic face Partick Thistle in the Scottish Cup at Parkhead this afternoon.
The Hoops boss is aware the Firhill outfit have not won a fixture against their illustrious Glasgow rivals in the past 26 meetings dating back to 1995.
 Alan Archibald’s side are currently 10th in the Premiership, one point above Hamilton Accies who occupy the relegation play-off place.
But Rodgers said: “We’ll be looking to get through to the quarter-finals, but Partick Thistle always give us a tough game.
“It’s a cup we want to win. It’s a really prestigious competition that we enjoyed winning last year.
“Alan is an excellent coach who manages his squad really well and they’re always difficult to beat.
“We played them a few weeks ago so we know their threat and the qualities they have. We’re never complacent against any team we play and they’ll be looking to bounce back from the result in midweek.
“They’ve got good energy in their team, so we’ll have to protect ourselves against that while showing our qualities.”
Charly Musonda is set for his first home start after playing the full 90 minutes in the setback against Steve Clarke’s men and Rodgers is expected to make other changes to his line-up.
Dedryck Boyata is out with his groin problem, but Jozo Simunovic will return after missing the 1-0 loss on the plastic Rugby Park surface as a precaution and the defender could partner Nir Bitton at the back with Marvin Compper still absent and Jack Hendry ineligible.Paddy Roberts is back in training, but the game comes too soon for his return.
The Jags travel to Parkhead following a midweek home defeat by Sevco Rangers with the odds stacked heavily against them.
But striker Kris Doolan has called on his team-mates to spring a surprise.
He said: “It’s down to mentality. People will turn around and maybe laugh because the gulf is so big, but Kilmarnock showed that on your day anything can happen.
“Personally, I believe we can go and win every game and we have to think that.
“I’m sure Celtic think that way and it’s important to have that mentality that you are good enough to win.
“We are under no illusions how difficult it is going to be, but on the day Kilmarnock showed last week that anything can happen and it just takes one goal to win the game.”

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