Football/Soccer

Kieran Tierney is a 'special talent' says Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers

Kieran Tierney challenges Bayern Munich's Marcio Rafinha during the Uefa Champions League, Group B match at Celtic Park on Tuesday
Andy Watters

CELTIC manager Brendan Rodgers described Kieran Tierney as a "special talent" following his display in the Hoops' 2-1 defeat by Bayern Munich at Parkhead on Tuesday night.

The 20-year-old left-back, who came through the Celtic youth academy, signed a new six-year contract on Monday.

Tierney held his own against Bayern's experienced stand-in skipper Arjen Robben, although the Scottish champions came up short in a pulsating Champions League encounter after goals from Kingsley Coman and Javi Martinez cancelled out Callum McGregor's leveller, for a result that means Celtic cannot progress in the competition.

Rodgers said: "Kieran Tierney was up against Arjen Robben and he was outstanding again.

"I had Danny Rose as a young player at Watford and I worked with Ryan Bertrand at Chelsea.

"And Kieran is right up there with those boys.

"He is still very young and those boys are in to their latter twenties. He still has bits of improvements to make but his quality, his will, his determination and his focus for a young player is outstanding and he loves playing for Celtic.

"And nights like that, you can see why he wanted to sign here.

"A real special talent but a boy who is focused in improvement."

Rodgers had no doubt that Tierney's fellow defender Dedryck Boyata was to blame for the opening goal.

The Belgium centre-back hesitated and let a long punt from Bayern keeper Sven Ulreich go over his head.

Coman was on to the ball in a flash and rounded keeper Craig Gordon, who had rushed outside his box, before slipping the ball past the backtracking Boyata, Bitton and Mikael Lustig, with the Hoops claiming the Bayern attacker had used an arm to control the ball.

The Carnlough native was not sure if there had been an infringement and was more concerned by how easily his defence was breached.

He said: "We have got to deal with it, as simple as that.

"We put good pressure on their keeper and our defensive line is good.

"So we have to head it. It is as simple as that.

"Craig was in a good start position.

"That at least gives him the chance.

"When their keeper kicks it, you want your goalkeeper high, your defence is in a good line, so head it."

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