Motherwell and Celtic meet for round two of the intensive triple under the floodlights at Fir Park on Wednesday. Robinson’s men will take heart from their first half performance in round one at Hampden and look to cause an upset.
Any lingering feelings of injustice must be put aside for this first league game of the season against Celtic. Instead, thoughts might be better focussed on their last visit when Motherwell held a half-time 2-0 lead. On that occasion we matched them all over the park and we unlucky to succumb late on to lose 3-4.
The players often remark that under the manager’s direction they are well aware of individual tasks and responsibilities and we can expect that again on Wednesday. A more significant factor might be the short recovery time available following the Hampden experience.
The advantage of the visitors’ large pool of players is obvious but there is some room for movement in the Motherwell squad. Hammell, Frear, Fisher, Petravicius, Campbell and Tanner were on the bench on Sunday and Bigirimana did not get his name on the team sheet. All will be hoping that the manager might make a few changes.
There is one certainty – Kipré will be given a warm welcome from the home stands. The young defender was clearly upset at his harsh dismissal and he will be boosted by the support of fans and colleagues.
Rodgers will expect his selection to continue the triumphant parade through the fixture list and few will expect a stumble. Motherwell can be backed at 12/1 for a win, odds that rarely produce a dividend. Unfortunately, the bookies may be right and a logical analysis suggests another 2-1 loss.
Remember the last time Celtic were at Fir Park?