BRENDAN Rodgers has refused to say if he will give Oh Hyeon-gyu and extended run ahead of Kyogo Furuhashi in the wake of Celtic’s emphatic win over Hibernian – but he has stressed the need for the Parkhead club’s players to show hunger in every game.  

Rodgers relegated his leading scorer Furuhashi, who had gone three games without netting, to the bench for the visit of Hibs to Parkhead last night and started Oh up front in the cinch Premiership match.

The South Korean striker responded by netting two goals in an emphatic 4-1 triumph which maintains the Scottish champions’ eight point lead over their city rivals Rangers at the top of the league table.

 Rodgers was pleased with how the forward performed – but he was non-committal when he was asked if the £2.5m 22-year-old would be preferred to the Japanese internationalist in the run of games which Celtic have coming up.  

READ MORERodgers insists Johnston 'needs to do more' to become Celtic starter

“We’ll see,” he said. “He’s playing well. It’s just whatever the game needs. It was ideal for him tonight and he came in and did well. But at this time of the season you need a freshness, especially in the forwards areas.

“Changing two of the front three was important for us and it gave us that freshness. Kyogo can't play in every game. But then you have someone like Oh, who can make an impact. He led the line really well and took his goals before we game him a breather.

“It’s a busy period and you are trying to keep the energy and attitude in the team. We had top show tonight why we are a good team who can play well and why we are champions. It was a really good, solid performance against a good side. It was important to keep that energy with the games coming thick and fast.

The Herald: “That’s what you need at big clubs like Celtic – you are always proving a point. It you want to be celebrating at the end of the season you have to have the hunger all of the time. They had a reminder about that at the weekend but they showed it tonight.

“I think Oh has done well when he’s come in. He was a really good reference for the team this evening. His hold-up play in the box was there. And obviously his second goal shows he can also run in behind. He showed good strength and really good composure in the game. I was really pleased with him.” 

 Meanwhile, Rodgers has revealed that he took off Cameron Carter-Vickers during the Premeirship game against Hibernian at Parkhead as a precautionary measure after the Celtic centre half felt his hamstring tighten up.

Carter-Vickers performed well during the first-half and had a hand in the opening goal which Oh scored after getting on the end of a Luis Palma corner.

But the United States internationalist failed to reappear for the second half – he was replaced by Nathaniel Phillips and the Liverpool loanee helped the home team to see out a resounding victory.

The former Spurs defender spent a spell on the sidelines earlier this term with a hamstring problem and Rodgers stated that he did not want to risk the player exacerbating the problem by asking him to continue.

READ MORE: Luis Palma inspires Scottish champions to emphatic triumph

 “Cam felt his hamstring,” he said. “He hasn’t done it, he felt he could continue. But I didn’t want to take any risks with him. That just protects him.”

Asked if Carter-Vickers would be fit to play Kilmarnock in a league game on the artificial pitch at Rugby Park on Sunday, he said: “I don’t know.” 

Rodgers also explained that left back Greg Taylor, who was replaced by Anthony Ralson during the second half, had been taken off because he had not been feeling 100 per cent fit.  

“Greg has done really well to make the game as he felt a bit fluey,” he said. “But he still wanted to play and got himself out there. He played really well and then when we could take him off we did so.”

The Herald: Oh Hyeon-Gyu nets his second goal for Celtic in 4-1 win over HibsRodgers made three changes to the team which laboured to a 3-1 win over St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park on Sunday – Oh took over from Furuhashi up front, Mikey Johnston was preferred to Yang Hyun-jun and Tomoki Iwata started ahead of David Turnbull.

The Northern Irishman was pleased with how Celtic performed after he freshened up his starting line-up.  

READ MOREScottish government rejects Minister for Football pyrotechnic use call

“I think it’s opportunity isn’t it?” he said. “I said that this is a month when players will get a chance and that opportunity. I thought Tomo came in and did really well. Oh was excellent. 

“Mikey has been better off the bench than starting games, but he deserved the start because of his impact that he’s had.  It’s just a case of being a bit more aggressive. It was good for him to get a start as he deserved it.” 

Rodgers added: “I thought it was a really good performance. It continued from the second half the other day. We know against Hibs that you have to be really well organised. I really like how Nick is doing his work there. They can build the game really well. 

“But our organisation was good, the team pressed really well and together and obviously forced a lot of turnovers in the game. So I thought it was a really good performance.”