Brendan Rodgers thrust a number of Celtic’s fringe players into centre-stage last night in pursuit of a result against RB Leipzig which would have altered the complexion of the Bhoys’ bid to qualify for the knockout rounds of the Europa League.
What he got was a disjointed performance which saw Celtic unable to halt their poor run away from home in Europe; as well as a 2-0 defeat which was sealed by two goals in four minutes towards the end of the first half.
Before the game, Rodgers laid down the gauntlet to the likes of Eboue Kouassi, Jozo Simunovic, Lewis Morgan and Ryan Christie; challenging them to use the game in Germany to prove their quality and stake a claim to be in the first team at Parkhead on a more regular basis.
It was no great surprise that not one of the fringe players managed to do that or alter the course of the evening’s result.
What did Rodgers really expect when these players had not been eased into the season or given a great deal of gametime to prepare for their big audition centre-stage?
There are arguments to be had over whether some of the players are of the right standard, but they were never going to go out and perform at their best when they were so rusty.
Rodgers has to take the rap for that. The result reflected the treatment of his squad players last night.