Top Line Summary

  • Joe Hart is a big voice in the team
  • Controlling the voice of the team within the dressing room
  • The thought process behind Kyogo and Adam Idah starting together
  • Stephen Welsh and Liam Scales stepping up to the plate...again

Everything that Brendan Rodgers said to the media after Celtic's 2-0 Scottish Cup triumph over St Mirren...

What about Joe Hart's performance?

Joe doesn’t have a lot to do but the times he does he makes wonderful saves. He’s a real catalyst for the team with the way he and Cal (McGregor) lead the dressing room. The saves he makes are so impressive. There were lots of crosses and lots of balls into the box but he was very clean. You always want keepers to catch but if they can’t then there’s a lot of distance on it. He did that very well more than a few times. It was another clean sheet for him and that was important.

How important is it with all the noise about that he (Hart) helps keep the boys focused?

Joe’s a very experienced player but we control the voice of the team inside the changing room. Listen, there are lots of opinions in the game, which is fair enough. But we’ll control our own inner voice, as they say, and that’s something that allows you to get the wins and get the qualification like today. We have to keep going. There are still a lot of games to play and a lot of exciting games. We’ll look to finish the season strong.

Can you talk us through why you put Kyogo and Adam Idah on the same team together?

It’s an option for us because of the system and how they play. It creates space and we felt with Adam’s presence that he would attract numbers and it would give opportunities for midfield players or attacking players coming into the game. I think it’s just learning the position, sometimes coming too deep. The times when they got it in between the lines he then sped up the game for us and did very well. We know what he can do when he is playing through the middle. Sometimes, against teams that are low, he is maybe not involved as much so this gives him a chance to connect the game for us. It’s an option and one we can use again.

Do people really understand that you have missing key personnel in your back four all season? How significant is that?

It’s a massive factor. Especially when you had two centre-halves who played together for nearly two seasons. Our centre-halves did very well today. The big guy up front is a handful and there were a lot of direct balls. (Stephen) Welsh and (Liam) Scales stood up to it. Tony Ralston was excellent. These are guys who will fight and give you absolutely everything in the game. That’s why I was so proud of them.