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 By PA Sport

Brendan Rodgers says Celtic must be patient against Lincoln Red Imps

Boss Brendan Rodgers is confident Celtic fans will have the patience that might be needed to get past Lincoln Red Imps in their Champions League qualifier at Parkhead on Wednesday night.

The Hoops are surprisingly trailing 1-0 to the part-timers after last week's shock defeat in the first leg of the second qualifying round in Gibraltar.

Rodgers expects Lincoln to pack their defence again and believes players and supporters may have to wait for a breakthrough. 

"The message to the players is similar to the supporters, it is that first 20 minutes if we don't score a goal then you have to be patient and for that you need the support," Rodgers said.

"But thankfully, I understand the Celtic supporters, they understand the game, they know football and patience is something they have been accustomed to. You can be an attacking team but there are times when the ball can't go forward, it has to be circulated.

"Our team will always be set up to create and score goals but if it doesn't come the message is, they just have to be patient because you might take one hour or 70 minutes in any game before you break a team down and then you can score two, three, four, five goals in the last 20 minutes.

Brendan Rodgers was appointed Celtic manager this summer.

"So if the game is needing the patience then I am sure the Celtic supporters will support the team."

Rodgers revealed that defender Erik Sviatchenko "is fine" after being taken off with a knock to the head in the first half of the 2-1 friendly win against Wolfsburg on Saturday, although midfielders Nir Bitton (hip flexor) and Stefan Johansen (ankle) are "probably unavailable" albeit both will be assessed.

Meanwhile, Rodgers has been linked with Liverpool full-back Jon Flanagan and Blackburn defender Shane Duffy.

The Hoops boss would not comment on specific names but said: "There is a couple of players that we are looking at but we will see how that develops over the coming days."

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