Brendan Rodges: 'Celtic will cope without Jozo Simunovic at Bayern Munich'


Brendan Rodgers's Celtic will face Bayern Munich in the Champions League this week.

Bayern breezed past Freiburg 5-0 in Heynckes's first Bundesliga game of his fourth spell in charge of the Bavarians, and the 72-year-old is looking for a repeat in Europe.

Celtic will be without Bosnia centre-back Jozo Simunovic who is struggling with a hamstring strain.

"Just seeing the change from how they had been playing, on Saturday. Obviously, there is always pressure at Bayern but I think the team and me have enough experience to handle that".

"There were a couple of results that didn't go the way they wanted to". They are one of the favourites and they are in their own back yard. How long it lasts, time will tell. But we have a good squad with other players, which can compensate for his absence.

Heynckes, who orchestrated the team's most recent Champions League success in 2012-13, added: "It's another competition".

"We need to come here without any fear and full of confidence", said the 28-year-old.

"He's come back into the team having been injured, you always want your top players fit, but he has had a reaction to the injury, so it's disappointing", said Rodgers. Both players have different qualities.

"Broony [Brown] has those real leadership qualities".

"He is a big-game player so he will impose his way of playing and that is always a big inspiration".

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After losing in Paris, Bayern go into Wednesday's game level on three points with Celtic, who beat the Belgian champions 3-0 away from home in their last match.

FC Bayern has big ambitions in this competition, the squad and me as well.

"'Reparation' is a word often used when you have lost a game in the group phases", said Heynckes when asked if Bayern want to atone for the loss.

The veteran head coach insisted the Germans will not underestimate Celtic. "We have good young coaches".

"They're powerful and aggressive".

"They will want to show their qualities, we need to be resilient and to score goals".

Both teams have three points from their opening two rounds of Champions League games heading into their two head-to-head clashes. "The risk of further injury is too great".

Saturday's 5-0 drubbing of Freiburg was the flawless start and now Heynckes wants to build momentum by downing Celtic.

"I hope for a German coach", Heynckes said.

"I see how hard the players are working and it's only a matter of time before we play really good football".