3 Celtic curveballs Brendan Rodgers could throw at Motherwell

Celtic return to domestic action this afternoon when they welcome the visit of Motherwell to Celtic Park. Thankfully, the international Celts have returned unscathed, which is always the greatest fear during these breaks.

The Steelmen provided a stern test for Celtic last time out as it required a goal deep into injury time from Matt O’Riley to see the Celts through on the day. Whilst Brendan Rodgers’ side has gained momentum since that result, Stuart Kettlewell’s team has failed to kick on.

Celtic were in good form heading into the international break and will be looking to build upon the 6-0 hammering of Aberdeen, but Rodgers will also have one eye on the trip to Rome to face Lazio in the Champions League next Tuesday evening.

With that trip to Rome in mind, today’s game against Motherwell will provide the final opportunity for some of the players on the verge of nailing down a starting place to secure their jersey for the Lazio encounter.

The Euro away day may also convince Brendan Rodgers to rotate the team to ensure the squad is at full fitness for the game on Tuesday, especially considering there were 14 Celts representing their nations on international duty over the last few weeks.

With plenty to think about and deliberate over, will Brendan Rodgers throw any curveballs in for the visit of Motherwell?


Maik Nawrocki

The Pole hasn’t been seen in a Celtic shirt since suffering an injury against Kilmarnock in Celtic’s exit from the Viaplay Cup.

In the early stages of his time at Celtic he was showing some impressive qualities, and given the money that the club has spent to acquire his services from Legia Warsaw in the summer, Brendan Rodgers will be eager to get his most expensive signing involved soon.

The manager has previously rested Cameron Carter-Vickers when fixtures begin to get congested due to the serious knee injuries the American has suffered in the last year, and given that he played two 90-minute games for his national team during the international break, allowing him a rest to ensure he is fully fit for Tuesday could be a wise move as well as allowing Nawrocki some valuable minutes.

David Turnbull

There is some serious competition for places in the middle of the park alongside Callum McGregor and Matt O’Riley, with fans never being 100% sure of who is going to start alongside them in Reo Hatate’s absence.

Odin Holm and Paulo Bernardo have both earned starting positions and to good effect but Turnbull turned in an impressive display from the bench in the last fixture against Aberdeen. With the midfielder eager to get involved in the Champions League, he could be an outside shout for a start today.

Oh Hyeon-gyu

Kyogo Furuhashi was substituted around an hour into Celtic’s commanding win over Aberdeen with a scary-looking head knock. His replacement, Oh Hyeon-gyu, made the most of his appearance from the bench, grabbing two goals to go along with his game-winning strike against St Mirren the week prior.

The South Korean is slowly building his confidence and momentum back up and Rodgers could look to include the 22-year-old in the team to avoid any potential injury for Kyogo heading into Tuesday’s massive European encounter.

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