Chris Davies claims he and Rodgers were impressed with James Forrest in 2013

Brendan Rodgers, coach of Celtic and assistant Chris Davies look on during a Celtic training session on the eve of their UEFA Champions League match against Anderlecht at Lennoxtown...

Celtic winger James Forrest has thrived under Brendan Rodgers.

Brendan Rodgers, coach of Celtic and assistant Chris Davies look on during a Celtic training session on the eve of their UEFA Champions League match against Anderlecht at Lennoxtown...

Celtic assistant boss Chris Davies has told The Scottish Sun that he and Brendan Rodgers were both aware of winger James Forrest during their time at Liverpool.

The Bhoys have thrived under Rodgers, winning an unbeaten domestic treble last season, and they are on course for another treble this term having already won the Scottish League Cup.

A number of players have been improved under manager Rodgers, with the likes of Tom Rogic, Stuart Armstrong, Callum McGregor and Leigh Griffiths all developing well over the last 18 months.

James Forrest of Celtic celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the Scottish Premier League match between Dundee and Celtic at  Dens Park on December 26, 2017 in Dundee, Scotland.

Another player who has kicked on under Rodgers' tutelage is winger James Forrest, who was seemingly heading for the exit door under Ronny Deila before becoming a key player under Rodgers.

Forrest, 26, joined Celtic way back in 2002 and has come up through the ranks with the Bhoys, and was often seen as being talented but too injury-prone and inconsistent to become a fixture of the Celtic side.

However, Forrest has starred under Rodgers, notching eight goals and 14 assists in all competitions last season, and has smashed 16 goals this term, including a hat-trick against Partick Thistle last weekend.

Forrest will be called upon to make a big impact against Zenit St. Petersburg in the Europa League on Thursday night, and Celtic assistant Chris Davies has hailed the wide man.

James Forrest of Celtic reacts during the Scottish Premier League match between Celtic and Ranger at Celtic Park on December 30, 2017 in Glasgow, Scotland.

Davies has told The Scottish Sun that he is 'absolutely delighted' that Forrest has kicked on, and even revealed that he and Rodgers were aware of the winger back in 2013 whilst preparing to face Celtic in a friendly, and is glad he has carved out a good career.

“In terms of tactics, James understands his role in the team, but he’s got a very high level of technique,” said Davies. “Forrest has a first touch, and the ability to evade people with his second touch, plus he’s quick. That allows him to perform at this level. He’s in a good moment, in confident spirits. You want as many players like that as you can. I’m absolutely delighted for James as he’s very humble, hard-working and dedicated. It’s always nice to see players like that getting the rewards.”

“I think it’s just a question of maturing. Brendan Rodgers and myself were aware of James when we were at Liverpool when he first broke on the scene. We played Celtic in a friendly. We even analysed friendly teams so we did our work in watching them. At that point Forrest was the stand-out player I could see in the Celtic team. Really bright and quick, he looked a real breakthrough player. Time has gone on, and he’s carved out a good career for himself. We’ve come in and he’s really flourished. James plays in different positions, so he has to be adaptable. He’s added that end product which is very important for wingers,” he added.

Celtic's Coach (L) Brendan Rodgers and his assistant Chris Davies celebrate after the UEFA Champions League Play-off Second leg match between the Celtic and Hapoel Beer-Sheva in Beer Sheva...

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