Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers insists Motherwell thrashing was ideal preparation for Champions League clash

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Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers insists Wednesday’s thrashing of Motherwell was ideal preparation ahead next week’s crunch Champions League cash with Hapoel Be’er-Sheva.

Rodgers reckons the Israeli outfit will adopt a defensive formation at Celtic Park for the play-off round first leg, just like Motherwell did in the heavy 5-0 Betfred Cup loss.

The former Liverpool boss has watched footage of Be’er-Sheva grinding out a backs-to-wall goal-less draw away to Greek side Olympiacos in the last round and reckons they will try to do the same in next Wednesday’s first leg in Glasgow.

brendanrodgersIt took Celtic 20 minutes to break down Well in the cup after Tom Rogic found a way past Craig Samson with the first of his double before Moussa Dembele notched a brace either side of a sublime Scott Sinclair strike.

Motherwell’s game plan to contain the Hoops backfired but Rodgers reckons the victory will stand his players in good stead ahead of the Be’er-Sheva’s visit.

Rodgers, whose side face Italian giants Inter Milan in an exhibition game in Limerick tomorrow, said: “For the game plan, it will be similar we think in terms of how they will play.

“In their last game away from home against Olympiacos they played 5-4-1, they were difficult to break down on the sides and central areas, so you have to be patient.

“It was difficult at the beginning against Motherwell, they came and played 3-5-2 and we had to really work in order to get the goals.

“So I think that was good preparation for us on Wednesday and if we play as well as that then we’ve got a good chance.”

Celtic have been drawn at home to League One side Alloa in the Betfred Cup quarter-finals and Rodgers insists he will show the utmost respect to the part-timers.

Speaking to the BBC, he added: “You want any home game in the next round, that’s what is most important.

“You always respect any team you play and when that time comes we will prepare the same as we do for any other game. To be here at home, we love playing here.”

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