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European Champions League

Celtic take uncertain step to return leg

Celtic’s Scott Brown (left) and Kristoffer Ajer compete with Rosenborg’s Nicklas Bendtner (SNS Group)

CelticRosenborg 0
European Champions League third qualifying round
Celtic Park

Celtic’s hopes of progressing to the European Champions League group stages were left hanging by a thread despite coach Brendan Rodgers saying he was happy with the outcome of this first leg.

The Scottish champions travel to Trondheim next Wednesday hoping they can grab the win that will avoid dropping into the Europa League play-off round.

The home side’s lack of firepower was in evidence during 90 minutes when they barely tested the visitors’ goal. Moussa Dembele is out injured until September though Leigh Griffiths will have served his one match ban to make him available for the return leg.

Jonny Hayes, newly-signed from Aberdeen, came on for another new recruit, Olivier Ntcham, in an attempt to improve Celtic’s strike rate. Their first attempts on target came from Stuart Armstrong in the 77th minute.

Former Arsenal striker Nicklas Bendtner spurned a chance in the 61st minute to nick an away goal for the Norwegians who needed extra-time to get past Republic of Ireland’s Dundalk in the previous qualifier.

Afterwards Rodgers remained upbeat.  “We know we can go there and win. We actually score more goals away from home,” he said.

Celtic: Gordon, Lustig, Simunovic, Ajer, Tierney, Brown, Ntcham, Armstrong, Forrest, Rogic, Sinclair.

Subs: De Vries, Bitton, Hayes, Benyu, McGregor, Ralston, Kouassi.

Rosenborg: Hansen, Hedenstad, Reginiussen, Skjelvik, Meling, Midtsjo, Konradsen, Jensen, Jevtovic, De Lanlay, Bendtner



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