Brendan Rodgers looking to embark on better Easter Road record second time round

Celtic return to league action this afternoon as they travel to another tricky away ground, Easter Road, to take on Nick Montgomery’s Hibs side.

Celtic fans may have felt unlucky following Wednesday’s home draw against Atlético Madrid in the Champions League group stage, but confidence and encouragement was what the players and the manager Brendan Rodgers took from the draw against Diego Simeone’s side.

Kyogo Furuhashi and Luis Palma were both on the scoresheet, the Japanese striker getting his second Champions League goal in consecutive games and it looks like the floodgates have been opened following his six-game goal-scoring duck in Europe’s premier competition.


Liam Scales also continued his career resurgence with another standout performance against the Spaniards. The Irishman has been unfazed by every challenge thrown his way this season. His step-up into regular first-team football at Celtic Park, followed by Champions League action, then topped off by international football, has all been taken in the stride of a player who seems to thrive on the big occasion.

Brendan Rodgers holds a 50% win record against the Hibees, boasting 4 wins, 2 draws and 2 losses against this afternoon’s opposition, but his record at Easter Road is even less convincing with the Celtic boss never having won there as manager on 3 attempts, losing twice and drawing once.

Despite this previous record, confidence will be high in the Celtic camp going into this match. Not only will this be due to the hard-fought point midweek in the Champions League, but it will also come down to the recent run of domestic form. The club has ticked off Pittodrie, Ibrox, Fir Park, the Tony Macaroni Arena and Tynecastle on the fixtures list without dropping any points and they will be hoping to carry over a similar mentality and performance level for the trip to Easter Road.

Hibs’ season didn’t get off to an ideal start domestically. A massive European tie against Aston Villa was sandwiched in amongst early league fixtures against St Mirren, Livingston and Motherwell, which resulted in Hibs losing their first three league games of the season, resulting in Lee Johnston being relieved of his duties.

Nick Montgomery was appointed from Central Coast Mariners in the A-League, where he won the title with what was regarded as the lowest budget in the league. The Englishman started positively in the capital, steadying the ship, which seemed to be veering off course under Johnston, and going unbeaten in his first five games as Hibs manager before succumbing to defeat at Ibrox against Rangers.

Summer signing Dylan Vente, brought in from Roda in Holland, has been the standout player so far this season, effectively replacing Kevin Nisbet, with the early signs showing that he is living up to his £700,000 price tag.

Key results this season would include the dramatic Elie Youan double late on to secure a draw at Tynecastle, as well as a win at Pittodrie against Aberdeen, with Le Fondre and Doidge sealing a comprehensive victory.

Despite not holding the best record at this ground, Rodgers will be eager to dispose of that hoodoo this season and finally get his first win at Easter Road.


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