Glasgow - Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers declared himself
delighted with the strength of his squad after a side packed with fringe
players helped the Hoops to a 4-0 win over Ross County on Wednesday.
The Hoops made eight changes from the starting 11 who defeated
rivals Rangers in their League Cup semi-final clash on Sunday.
Only Craig Gordon, Mikel Lustig and Erik Sviatchenko
survived as Rodgers utilised his squad ahead of crunch clashes with Aberdeen
and Borussia Monchengladbach within the next seven days.
Patrick Roberts gave Celtic a second minute lead before a
late goal rush saw Stuart Armstrong and substitutes Scott Sinclair and Moussa
Dembele round off the scoring.
The win -- their eighth in nine league games -- extended
Celtic's lead at the top of the Scottish Premiership to seven points with a
game in hand over nearest rivals Aberdeen, whom the Hoops face at Pittodrie on
Also read: Now go and win cup, Rodgers tells Celtic
"Our thinking going into the game tonight was that
prior to this we had played a lot of games," Rodgers said.
"I've got great trust in my players because I see them
every day and they're working very hard. In terms of our methods of how we play
they have to work intensely in training because if they can't do that then you
can't put them into the game.
"Even with all the changes I thought we were great.
Some of the guys come into the game having not played for a while and I thought
they were outstanding.
"The intensity I ask the players to play at needs to be
at a high level with that variety in the game and the young players that came
"Emilio Izaguirre and guys like that haven't played for
a long time and I thought they were outstanding. Ryan Christie came in and did
very well and young Patrick Roberts has been out of it for a while but showed
his qualities tonight in creating and scoring goals.
"It was a very pleasing performance with so many
chances and again it shows the depth of the squad.
"The rest of the players will be fresh for the game at
the weekend. That was the plan for tonight so it couldn't have gone any
Ross County had a number of chances to equalise before
Celtic's late goals added some gloss to their victory and Rodgers praised his
"It was a very tough game for us. Ross County are one
of the best teams we have played," the former Liverpool boss said.
"But I thought our attacking play was very strong and
defensively I thought we were excellent as well.
"When it is 1-0 you always have to be careful with the
ball and obviously defensively. But again our fitness came into the game along
with our physicality.
"The intensity and tempo of the game got us our goals
late on. It was 4-0 and we kept a clean sheet but we had to fight all the way
right to the end."For
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