Celtic trio miss Monchengladbach game


Mistakes from Kolo Toure led to both of Borussia Monchengladbach’s goals at Celtic Park

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Celtic defenders Kolo Toure and Jozo Simunovic – and striker Leigh Griffiths – will miss Tuesday’s Champions League game at Borussia Monchengladbach.

Centre-backs Toure and Simunovic stayed in Glasgow to work on their fitness, while Griffiths is ill.

Left-back Kieran Tierney had already been ruled out through injury.

Striker Raffael and midfielder Thorgan Hazard, who both missed Gladbach’s 2-0 win in Glasgow through injury, face fitness tests.

Coach Andre Schubert said: “I’m happy that Raffael and Hazard could be involved.

“We will decide tomorrow whether or not they will be in the squad.”

Defenders Mamadou Doucoure and Marvin Schulz and forward Josip Drmic are back training but missed Friday’s German Bundesliga game against Eintracht Frankfurt.

Midfielder Ibrahima Traore and defenders Andreas Christensen and Alvaro Dominguez also missed the 0-0 draw through injury.

It was a fourth league game in a row in which Andre Schubert’s side have failed to score.

But another win over Celtic will take them five points clear of Brendan Rodgers’ side in Champions League Group C.

That would boost the Germans’ chances of beating Manchester City to the runners-up spot behind leaders Barcelona.

It would also leave the Scottish champions adrift at the bottom and with only an outside chance of even salvaging third place and qualification for the Europa League.

Rodgers has last-16 hopes for Celtic

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers says his aim is for his side to consistently reach the latter stages of the Champions League.

“The process we’re beginning, the experience this competition has given us, is the chance to build towards that,” he said of their last-16 hopes.

“It’s step by step. They’ve arrived into this level, in the toughest group in the competition, and of course it’s been difficult for them.

“We don’t see it as a threat. It’s a major challenge for us, but it’s a great challenge to have.

“Each year we can arrive here, we can improve on it and hopefully get to the latter stages consistently.”

Will Celtic change their shape at the back?

Toure has not played in Celtic’s three domestic victories since being at fault for both of Gladbach’s goals in Glasgow.

Until then, he and Simunovic, who has returned this season after an eight-month injury absence, had been rotating in central defence beside Erik Sviatchenko and the Croat played in Saturday’s 1-0 Premiership win over Aberdeen.

Celtic assistant manager Chris Davies said: “Griffiths is not very well and didn’t train, so he won’t be travelling out.

Jozo Simunovic and Leigh Griffiths will not feature in Monchengladbach

“Jozo Simunovic is obviously building up his progression back into the team.

“He was out for a long time, so he won’t travel. Kolo Toure has still got a slight issue, so he is building his rehab.”

Asked if the absence of Simunovic and Toure would result in Celtic changing their shape at the back, Davies replied: “We might do. We’ve got the option to.

“We’ve taken enough defenders. We’ve got a big squad and this is a period when that benefits us because we’ve got a few injures.

“We’ve got plenty of players that can play in that position that we trust who we know are good players, so there are no problems there.”

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