Brendan Rodgers excited by Celtic’s bid for double with six matches remaining

Brendan Rodgers has braced his Celtic team for six massive games over the next month as he relishes the challenge of trying to secure a league and cup double.

The Hoops are three points clear of Rangers at the top of the cinch Premiership with five matches remaining, including a potentially pivotal one at home to their city rivals on 11 May.

They then lock horns with the Ibrox side once more in the Scottish Cup final at Hampden a fortnight later.

Rodgers is well aware of the possibilities for his in-form team if they can hold their nerve over the remaining weeks of the campaign but he has warned that they must focus fully on each fixture, starting with this Sunday’s trip to Dundee.

“We’re looking no further forward than Dundee,” the Hoops boss told Celtic TV. “That’s a big game for us, like every one will be now in these six games to finish, both in the league and the cup final.

“I’m really excited about this challenge of finishing the season with a success. But it’s about taking each game at a time, keeping the focus on Dundee, not looking anywhere else other than where we can exploit Dundee and use our strengths to win the game.”

Rodgers said earlier this month that Celtic were entering a period of the campaign where they generally “come alive” and he reiterated on Wednesday that he senses his team are embracing the pressure of chasing glory.

“That is the expectation,” he said. “We are not here on holiday. We are here to win and we are here to win in the best fashion we possibly can.

“That has always been my mantra. We are not just here to win, we are here to win in the best way possible.

“I think we sense that and we feel that as a club. That’s the excitement around it, that everything is in our hands to achieve what we want to achieve, and that is what we are focusing on.”

Dundee did Celtic a favour in their previous match when they held Rangers to a goalless draw last week and Rodgers is expecting a tough test at Dens Park on Sunday as Tony Docherty’s sixth-placed side bid to enhance their prospects of qualifying for Europe.

“We’ve played very well against them this season but Tony and the staff have done a brilliant job,” he said. “They’ve shown as a collective the importance of playing as a team, working hard for each other and where it can take you.

“There will be other teams who other people may feel have better squads than Dundee but the job Tony’s done there in his first season up in the Premiership has been absolutely brilliant.

“We go there with no level of complacency, only respect for a team that has done very well. We have to be at the top of our game to get the result.”


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