April 23, 2018

Celtic Manager Brendan Rodgers Explains Why They Lost To Zenit St Petersburg

26 February 2018, 02:21 | Francis Delgado

Celtic's Callum Mc Gregor celebrates after he makes it 1-0 in the first leg

Celtic's Callum Mc Gregor celebrates after he makes it 1-0 in the first leg

Celtic crashed out of the Europa League in calamitous style with a 3-0 defeat by Zenit St Petersburg in Russian Federation.

A goal was still all Celtic needed to go through but in the 61st minute striker Aleksandr Kokorin made it 3-0 on the night to end the Scottish champions' hopes of reaching the last 16.

"Defensively we lacked aggression, particularly in the first half", said Rodgers. "We didn't defend forward well enough".

Indeed, dabblebet go just 8/11 (1.73) that Mancini's side manage more than a single goal in this game.

"The corner is one that can happen, we were blocked off, they worked it well and found the space".

Zenit's second goal also appeared avoidable as Kuzyaev, after taking an Anton Zabolotny pass, fired high past De Vries from 25 yards with the Dutchman appearing to misjudge the flight of the ball.

But, at 2-0 down, we were still in the game and we had to show bravery. But everything was too sideways and backwards.

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"And at the third goal, we conceded possession too cheaply".

"There is still an terrible lot of work for us to do", he added.

There is still an bad lot of work for us to do but, when I take a step back, there have been a lot of positives for us in Europe this season. "Last week was an outstanding performance and you would think that would allow us to come into this game with confidence".

"Over the course of both competitions in Europe, there have been aspects which pleased me".

"We played a flawless game really in how the players defended and attacked". We now have to finish our domestic campaign as strongly as we can and create another piece of history on that front.

"Dembele was very good and aggressive, Ntcham was good and Brown always is, he is excellent for the team", Rodgers said, as quoted by STV. Celtic are a strong team but we played very, very well. At the beginning of the first leg, I was being a realist as everyone would probably expect Zenit to go through, but what we showed in the first leg is that we're going to make it very hard for them and going to make it really competitive.

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