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Dembele and Edouard impress as Celtic put seven past Shamrock Rovers

By July 7, 2018No Comments

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers enthused about the performance of his French strike pair after a strong starting line-up warmed up for their Champions League opener with a 7-0 victory over Shamrock Rovers.

Moussa Dembele and Odsdonne Edouard were both on target in the Dublin friendly in Celtic’s final preparation for Tuesday’s Champions League qualifying clash against Alashkert.

The Scottish champions will travel to Armenia with confidence after Rodgers gave what looked like a first-choice side an hour of action at the Tallaght Stadium before making wholesale changes, although skipper Scott Brown had already come off at half-time.

Celtic were five goals up before the mass substitutions with Edouard and Callum McGregor hitting two and Dembele also netting. Subs Scott Sinclair and Lewis Morgan completed the rout.

Rodgers lined up with a 3-5-2 formation and his front pair of Dembele and Edouard proved a handful.

With Leigh Griffiths not featuring in the Irish capital, the pair look set to lead the goalscoring charge in the Champions League first qualifying round.

Rodgers told Celtic TV: “I thought they were excellent, really powerful and dynamic. Odsonne’s movement was terrific, he makes up the fourth man in midfield but he can spin in behind.

“At times we could have played them in a bit earlier and played the pass a bit deeper. So it’s working out the system and where we can exploit teams, what zones we need to get into. But that’s all part of our preparation and the two combined very well.”

The Celtic manager added: “It was a very good exercise. The first 65 minutes the team looked very strong and powerful and scored some very good goals.

“We need some more work on the shape of that team in terms of some of the relationships within it, especially defensively, but keeping a clean sheet was good.

“And then we saw the other side, young players who were dynamic and fast and maintained the intensity.”