Boss Brendan Rodgers claims "ignorance" and "lack of knowledge" underpinned the criticism of Celtic and Scottish football by radio presenter Jason Cundy.

After Celtic's 4-0 win at bottom side Inverness on Wednesday night - which took them 27 points clear of Aberdeen at the top of the Ladbrokes Premiership - the former Chelsea defender described the standard in the top flight in Scotland on his TalkSport show as "embarrassing".

The ex-Ipswich Town and Tottenham Hotspur player also claimed the Hoops would struggle to beat Stoke City if they were in the Premier League while questioning the popularity of the Glasgow club in terms of supporters.

However, former Swansea City and Liverpool manager Rodgers, a former youth coach at Stamford Bridge, said: "I know Jason, I worked with him at Chelsea so I know what he is like.

"He obviously has to create a programme which stimulates conversation.

"It is ignorance really, with all due respect. It's a lack of knowledge of football.

"The footballing world is more than the Premier League.

"We all want to see and we all love the Premier League and I was involved in it and it is a fantastic league but football is global and of course a club like Celtic is one of the biggest in the world.

"But if your eyes are only on one league then of course you tend to ignore what is happening around that.

"He is a good boy Jason, I know him well but I probably understand what he is trying to do with his comments.

"He will always be welcome to Celtic Park and he would be surprised I am sure."

Celtic's Nir Bitton pointed the finger of example at former Rangers midfielder Joey Barton and Ibrox attacker Niko Kranjcar when denying Scottish football was easy.

Barton was a high-profile signing for Light Blues in the summer from Burnley and did not pull up any trees before he returned to the Premier League club in January after having his contract terminated by the Ibrox club following a training ground bust-up.

Former Tottenham player Kranjcar was also signed in the summer as the Govan club returned to the top flight but has been out since October after sustaining a serious knee injury.

Asked about lack of challenge for Celtic, the Israel midfielder said: "A lot of people will look at the Scottish table and think Celtic have no competition in this league but it is far from being true.

"I think you can see players who have played in Premier League like Joey Barton or Niko Kranjcar, who came to Scotland, and they thought it was going to be easy. No. It is not easy.

"It is a very competitive league, it is a very difficult league, very tough. The games are not easy.

"We made it (Inverness) easy but there are no easy games in the Scottish league and the thing that the gaffer works with this season is keep pushing yourself to the end and we will see what happens."