Celtic won't be 'in awe' of Bayern

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His side completed their final training session at their home stadium of Celtic Park, but in the evening manager Brendan Rodgers got a sniff of the atmosphere at the Allianz Arena. “It’s a magnificent arena. It’s a pleasure to play here,” said the 44 year-old, 25 hours before kick-off in their match against FC Bayern. “It’s an impressive stadium. We’re going to soak up the atmosphere,” endorsed Scott Sinclair.

As hundreds of Celtic fans were already getting in the mood for the game in the city centre, the Bhoys’ manager and winger put on a brave front at the press conference at the Allianz Arena. “We won’t be in awe,” assured Rodgers. “We want to defend aggressively and also get forward and try to get a good result.”

“We come without fear”

The Scottish champions’ confidence stems from an unbeaten run of 59 domestic games as well as their 3-0 win at Anderlecht three weeks ago, their first victory in 11 Champions League matches. “We come here without fear. We have confidence and we believe in ourselves. We’re coming here to win,” said Sinclair, who played with Arjen Robben at Chelsea from 2005 to 2007. “He’s a world-class player and one who we’ll have to stop.”

Celtic were without several first-team players in their 1-0 win at Dundee last weekend. Captain and midfielder Scott Brown, who Rodgers described as “a big inspiration for the team”, could return to the side after three weeks out. Midfielder Stuart Armstrong is also available again.

However centre-back Jozo Simunovic has been ruled out because of a muscle injury. “He almost certainly won’t be able to play tomorrow, but we have the necessary cover in defence,” said Rodgers, who described Bayern as “one of the best teams in world football” and “one of the favourites in this competition. But we’re Celtic. It’ll be a hard game and a big test for us.”

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