Brendan Rodgers slams Celtic defending in AEK Athens loss

Lafferty urges Hearts to “work something out” with Rangers over potential move

After the narrow defeat in the second leg of the third qualifier in the Olympic stadium, where a late Scott Sinclair goal reduced the deficit after goals from Rodrigo Galo and Marko Livaja had put the home side 2-0 up, the Parkhead boss confirmed Boyata had been fit.

"Unfortunately, I could not play because I'm not yet 100% operational", the 27-year-old said on Instagram.

Celtic defender Dedryck Boyata has denied he is refusing to play and instead insists he is injured. "We gave AEK a lot of problems but you have to defend properly and we didn't do that".

The outcome was a bitter blow for Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers while AEK will be relishing a two-legged clash with Hungarians Vidi FC for a berth in the lucrative group stage of the competition.

"I still felt this was a game in which we had more than enough to win but you have to defend better than we did".


Sutton said Ladbrokes Premiership champions Celtic had splashed out on expensive "disco lights" but failed to make the right kind of signings to bolster the squad bossed by Brendan Rodgers.

Glasgow Celtic suffered their first domestic defeat of the 2018-19 season on Saturday, with the Scottish champions going down 1-0 to Hearts at Tynecastle.

It was the start the Parkhead side had feared and moments later they nearly conceded a second when Victor Klonaridis, who scored in Glasgow last week, burst into the Hoops box but toe-poked a shot wide of the target from eight yards.

Celtic will now contest a Europa League playoff round tie with Latvia's Spartaks Jurmala or Suduva Marijampole of Lithuania.

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