Salzburg v Celtic: Expected lineup with Top player sidelined


Celtic team news – A mini injury has hit the Celtic squad ahead of their Europa League clash with Red Bull Salzburg tonight (5.55pm).

Celtic will be playing the game without centre-back Kristoffer Ajer (hamstring) while Filip Benkovic is uncertain, with the duo both absent in the 1-0 win over Aberdeen last weekend.

Jack Hendry is expected to deputise in the heart of defence alongside Dedryck Boyata, while full-backs Mikael Lustig and Kieran Tierney are well established as first-choice on the flanks.

Odsonne Edouard is also a doubt after sustaining a dead leg injury against the Dons, although Rodgers is confident the French striker will be fit in time to feature against Salzburg.

Austrian champions Red Bull Salzburg, who reached the semi-final of the tournament last season before being sent out of the game by Marseille, are unbeaten in this campaign and sit top of their domestic league with nine straight victories.

Both sides won their opening Group B fixtures, the Hoops defeating Rosenborg 1-0 at Celtic Park while Salzburg triumphed over RB Leipzig 3-2 in Germany although the Northern Irishman noted that they surrendered a two-goal lead before scoring a late winner.

“They had a very good result in their last game, away in Leipzig,” said Rodgers.

“They score goals but we also know they concede goals as well so there’s going to be opportunities in the game and we need to be clinical.

“When you watch the game against Leipzig there were a couple of mistakes where they go 2-0 up but then it all changes very quickly in the second half.

“You always have to find a team’s weak points and how you can exploit those.

“But we respect every opponent. They have real quality in their team and the players have confidence.

“They win a lot of games and score goals so we know defensively that we’ll have to be really organised and also really aggressive in the right moments.

“We know we can score goals also. We have good speed in the team, good players and we can also keep the ball well.

“It’ll be a difficult game for us but it’s what we expect in a European game. “We know we have to defend well, be concentrated, match the intensity and work rate. When we have possession we need to be dangerous.

“We’re looking forward to that challenge.

“Both teams have started off with victories so we come here and hope to do well.”