Rodgers: Celtic draw with Wolves 'great experience' ahead of new season

Wolves scored a late penalty to secure a draw in Dublin.

Brendan Rodgers: Celtic’s draw with Wolves ‘great experience’ ahead of new season SNS Group

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers was happy with his side’s work in their 1-1 draw with Wolves and believes the friendly was “a perfect workout”.

The Treble-holders’ pre-season preparations continued in the showpiece match in Dublin and supporters saw their side make an impressive start against the English Premier League side.

Reo Hatate struck the woodwork before Kyogo Furuhashi put Celtic ahead with a sixth minute goal.

Both sides created chances in an energetic match but Celtic couldn’t add to their lead and Wolves equalised in the final moments.

Matt Doherty went down in the box and Joe Hart was ruled to have brought down the opposition player.

Brazilian striker Matheus Cunha made no mistake from the spot and though that disappointed Rodgers, he was more than happy with what his side took from the game.

“It feels like a loss whenever you concede late on, but the workout was perfect for us,” he told Viaplay Sports.

“I thought we had some spells of fantastic football, defensively against a good side, good players you have to defend and it’s the perfect type of game that we needed.

“Of course the game gets a bit broken when you’re making changes and you lose that fluency and the rhythm of the game, so I’m probably in that stage, second half, the last 25 minutes, we gave the ball away too much.

“So we have to be better in that aspect. But overall, we’re really pleased, a great exercise for us against a good side.

“It’s very important in any team of mine to look to impose and initiate the game as high up the pitch as you can and like I said, we have guys that are willing to work and run and they worked very well.

“It was a great finish by Kyogo but we had other chances as well, some other fantastic chances, but it was a really good exercise.”

Celtic begin their league title defence with a home match against Ross County next Saturday but have one final warm-up when they face Athletic Bilbao in James Forrest’s testimonial on Tuesday night. Rodgers still sees room for improvement before a busy competitive schedule begins.

“I just think it’s building again on the fitness aspects, the positioning,” the manager added.

“The team obviously plays well but there are certain phases of the game where we can improve. I thought in the build-up in the early stages we were very good, and then it’s dealing with a little bit more pressure.

“On Tuesday we’ll play two 45-minute teams. We need to get some minutes into their legs and obviously then that will be a final preparation game before the season starts. So that’s the idea for Tuesday.”

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