Brendan Rodgers explains what disappointed him about Celtic's draw with Astana

New Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers during the press conference

The Hoops boss commented on the need to tighten up when defending set pieces.

New Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers during the press conferenceCeltic manager Brendan Rodgers

Brendan Rodgers has revealed that he was disappointed by Celtic’s handling of set pieces during the draw with FK Astana last night, in quotes published by the Herald Scotland.

The Hoops secured a valuable away goal late on but conceded sloppily from a corner in the 19th minute and Rodgers wants to see that kind of concentration lapse removed from his team’s game.

“The goal was disappointing,” said the 43-year old. “I think there is an issue there with set pieces long before I came in. We lost the man too easy.

New Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers during the press conferenceCeltic manager Brendan Rodgers

“I think over the course of pre-season we have defended them well, but we have to defend better. We had to cope with a lot of long ball situations as they play quite direct at times. We need to ensure that our concentration is 100 per cent.”

Inexperienced centre-back Eoghan O’Connell was drafted in to solve the Hoops’ defensive crisis and it was he who lost Yuri Logvinenko for Astana’s opener.

Eoghan O'Connell scores the first goal for CelticEoghan O'Connell scores for Celtic

The 20-year old recovered from his early mistake and coped well under challenging circumstances however, suggesting he can be a useful option for the Bhoys this season.

Celtic grabbed a crucial away goal against the run of play courtesy of an excellent Leigh Griffiths strike with just over ten minutes remaining.

Celtic's Leigh Griffiths celebrates after scoring their second goalCeltic's Leigh Griffiths celebrates after scoring

Rodgers’ men will return to Parkhead confident of securing passage through to the Champions League play-off stage but they must eradicate their habit of conceding from dead balls if they are to enjoyed a sustained run in the competition.

Celtic struggled to defend set pieces under Ronny Deila and improving their solidity in this regard will be one of Rodgers’ most pressing tasks this season.

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