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Rodgers prepared for his Plan B ‘transfer option’

Brendan Rodgers was giving very little away about Celtic’s January transfer plans, even admitting that he is prepared to complete the season with his current squad.

Expectations of significant change were set in media interviews following Celtic’s exit from the Champions League but so far movement has been very quiet.

Kwon Hyeok-kyu has moved to St Mirren on loan with Nicolas Kuhn added to the squad in a £3m deal from Rapid Vienna.

Under Ange Postecoglou January transfer dealings were front loaded with the classic coming in 2022 when Daizen Maeda, Reo Hatate and Yosuke Ideguchi were announced as signings on December 31, midway through the window Matt O’Riley joined up from MK Dons.

Rather than set a new precedent the two January’s under Postecoglou appear to be the exception with barely a credible rumour of new arrivals to bolster Celtic’s bid to land two trophies this season.

Before and after Saturday’s match with Ross County is the only time that Rodgers will be on media duties before the transfer window closes, in today’s broadcast media conference there was an admission that there might not be any more additions other than Kuhn to the Celtic squad.

5 minutes

Do you have that confidence that you might be able to get one or two over or are you preparing yourself that this is what you’ll need to go with until the end of the season?

Both. I’m prepared for hopefully being able to bring some players in to add to the squad but on the same token it’s how I work, my faith and trust to develop players who are here is still there and that’s what I’ll also look forward to. I understand the need for progression and 100 percent what the team needs to improve.

I don’t want to be in a rush to just bring in A player, it has to be the right player. I want to be here a period of time if I’m successful, but I also want to create an opportunity for young players to come through. Everyone talks about signings and bringing people in but you might have someone within your academy, but you need to have the space for those players to flourish and develop.

I hope we can add to the group, I’d be confident we can, but also I’m someone who wants to develop the talents who are here.

During the summer window Rodgers signed off seven players identified by Mark Lawwell as well as the permanent move for Tomiki Iwata and loan moves for Nat Phillips and Paulo Bernardo.

Those moves have left the Celtic squad seriously bloated, more so with Rocco Vata and Daniel Kelly featuring against Buckie Thistle and being retained in the first team squad.

No detail has ever emerged on the four positions that Rodgers wanted strengthened when he spoke after the defeat from Lazio but most educated guesses would suggest a goalkeeper, left-back and striker being close to the top of the list.

Joe Hart and Greg Taylor are virtually unopposed in the Starting XI but that also creates a dependency, injury to either player would force the side into significant upheaval.

In attack Kyogo Furuhashi is the only striker currently available, depending on results at the Asian Cup he could be the only option for the difficult run of fixtures coming up which sees Celtic go to Aberdeen, Hibs and St Mirren over the course of nine days.

CLICK HERE for Championship club interested in signing Mikey Johnston.

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