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Toure added to Champions League squad

By July 27, 2016No Comments

Celtic have been given a boost ahead of their Champions League qualifier with Astana with the news that Kolo Toure has been added to their European roster.

The 35-year-old signed earlier this week but won’t be available for the first leg against the Kazakhstan champions on Wednesday.

However, the former Arsenal, Manchester City and Liverpool defender could feature in the second leg at Celtic Park on August 3 after being included in Brendan Rodgers’ pool of players.

Celtic have a number of defenders unavailable with Jozo Simunovic, Erik Sviatchenko and Dedryck Boyata all sidelined through injury, meaning Rodgers is likely to turn to either Efe Ambrose or Eoghan O’Connell to fill the defensive void.

“Both players have worked very well,” the Celtic boss said. “I have been really impressed in particular by young Eoghan over the course of pre-season. He’s a good size. First and foremost he wants to defend.

“In the short period of time I’ve worked with him, I can see he is good in the air. He has been in and around the first-team for a few years now and he’s had some loan experience playing senior football.

“In terms of Efe, people have seen him a lot more than me, and he knows that if he can cut out mistakes and errors that he makes in games then you have a very good player.

“Physically he’s very strong, he’s very fast and he’s good in the air. It’s just about decision-making and simplifying the game and if he can do that then he can be an asset.”

Meanwhile, goalkeeper Craig Gordon is confident they’ll have no issue at the back.

He said: “I don’t see it being a problem. We still have the same defenders we had at the club at the end of last season so I don’t see any problem with whoever is picked to start. They’ll be up to the task.”

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