'Absolute class': Celtic fans rue Cristiano Piccini's Champions League display

Brendan Rodgers manager of Celtic walks off dejected after the UEFA Champions League Group B match between Celtic and Paris Saint Germain at Celtic Park on September 12, 2017 in Glasgow,...

Cristiano Piccini was reportedly wanted by Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers but headed to La Liga rather than the Scottish Premiership.

Marcus Rashford (R) of Manchester United competes for the ball with Cristiano Piccini of Valencia during the Group H match of the UEFA Champions League between Manchester United and...

Tuesday night didn’t make for great viewing for Celtic fans.

Moussa Dembele scored for Lyon in the Champions League, John McGinn set up a goal for Aston Villa in the Championship and Cristiano Piccini impressed at Old Trafford.

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According to the Daily Record in August, Brendan Rodgers wanted a new right-back this summer with Mikael Lustig past his best, Antony Ralston not yet ready to start regularly and Cristian Gamboa out of favour.

And Italian Piccini was the man Rodgers desired, having impressed in Portugal with Sporting Lisbon last season.

Cristiano Piccini of Valencia in action with Romelu Lukaku of Manchester United during the Group H match of the UEFA Champions League between Manchester United and Valencia at Old Trafford...

But Piccini ended the transfer window as a Valencia player, joining the La Liga outfit for £7 million. So Celtic fans were keeping a close eye on the 26-year-old as Los Che travelled to Manchester United for the midweek Champions League clash.

And it’s fair to say many are ruing their failing to bring the former Italy U21 ace to Parkhead.

Piccini is far from the finished product. His end product remains erratic and he can be caught out of position at times. But he would have offered the rapid pace that Celtic are currently lacking on the right with Lustig not the player he was a few years ago.

Cristiano Piccini of Valencia CF with the ball during the La Liga match between Levante UD and Valencia CF at Ciutat de Valencia on September 2, 2018 in Valencia, Spain

 

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