Stuart Armstrong Rodgers hails Celtic's 'Blond Cafu'

The Scottish midfielder had to slot in at right-back after an injury to Mikel Lustig.

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Celtic's Stuart Armstrong (C) attends a training session at the club's Lennoxtown training centre play

Celtic's Stuart Armstrong (C) attends a training session at the club's Lennoxtown training centre

(AFP/File)
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Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers said he expected big things from Stuart Armstrong after his man-of-the-match performance in the 3-0 win over Inverness Caledonian Thistle.

The Scottish midfielder had to slot in at right-back after an injury to Mikel Lustig saw the Swede limp off early on and Rodgers praised him for his performance in an unfamiliar role.

"The Blond Cafu!" the former Liverpool manager said after Saturday's Scottish Premiership contest, in reference to the former Brazil full-back.

"He was up and down that wing, wasn't he? The boy did brilliantly to adapt to the position.

"He has played a central role for me. I see him developing and progressing his game day in and day out and he is now looking the part.

"He is a clever boy and he knows the role. His only disappointment is that he never scored as he had enough chances.

"He was the player that I was really excited to work with. He has all the tools I like in a modern midfield player.

"He can pass the ball, he is mobile and he has energy. He needed to learn the game tactically and press the game, but he has a lot of qualities suited to being a modern-day footballer.

"I just think he needed confidence, probably. He came from Dundee United as a central player, but there are a lot of good midfield players here and he played from the left side.

"He was patient and now he has taken his opportunity."

After a frustrating first half against Inverness, the champions seized control in the second period.

Brown concern

Tom Rogic (R) fired home a third goal in the 83rd minute as Celtic exacted revenge for Inverness being the only side to take points off them this season play

Tom Rogic (R) fired home a third goal in the 83rd minute as Celtic exacted revenge for Inverness being the only side to take points off them this season

(AFP/File)

A 48th-minute strike from Scott Sinclair set them on their way before Leigh Griffiths added a second with Greg Tansey seeing red for a second bookable offence in the build-up.

In-form Australia international Tom Rogic then fired home a third in the 83rd minute as Celtic exacted revenge for Inverness being the only side to take points off them this season -- a 2-2 draw in September.

The Hoops are now 10 points clear of Aberdeen, who beat Partick Thistle 2-1 on Friday, with a game in hand, although bitter rivals Rangers could close to within nine points if they beat Ross County away on Sunday.

Inverness manager Richie Foran believes Celtic, who have won 10 of their opening 11 league matches, could go the entire season undefeated.

"The way they played today, yes, definitely. It's the squad they have," the Irishman said.

"Probably the main thing is the firepower they have up top. It's better than anything I've seen in the league."

Meanwhile, Scotland manager Gordon Strachan faces a nervous wait over the fitness of Scott Brown.

The 31-year-old midfielder returned to the Scotland squad this week after retiring from international football earlier this year, but went off with a knock.

"You know when he comes off it is a sore one," Rodgers said.

"We will know in the next 24 hours. I am sure he will report to Scotland. I don't think there is anything to stop him."

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