Brendan Rodgers: Kolo Toure will be a valuable player for Celtic
By Alex Stevens
Brendan Rodgers claimed that Kolo Toure was in ‘great’ condition and ‘will be a valuable player for us’, following Celtic’s International Champions Cup game against Leicester on Saturday.
Celtic came away with a creditable draw, although they went on to lose 6-5 on penalties to the Premier League champions. Kasper Schmeichel saved the crucial spot-kick from James Forrest.
Talking to Sky Sports afterwards Rodgers said, “I think the mentality we’ve tried to create is that winning mentality, and if you’re not winning the game, try not to lose it, even in pre-season games.
“So, to be a goal behind and create opportunities, and then get the goal – and it was a wonderful goal – I think we deserved that over the course of the game.”
Kolo Toure was in the stands and Rodgers confirmed that the transfer would be finalised on Sunday.
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Rodgers brought the Ivory Coast international to Liverpool in 2013 and the 35-year-old will now look to bring his experience to help shore up the Celtic defence.
“Kolo will be great for us,” said Rodgers. “I took him to Liverpool and that experience and the impact he had there… He played a lot of games and was a real stalwart for Jurgen there at the end, and played the Europa League final.
“He looks after himself, he’s in great condition… He’ll be a valuable player for us.”
If he’s match fit, Toure could go straight into Celtic’s Champions League qualifier against FC Astana on Wednesday.
It was reported earlier that although Celtic have missed last Thursday’s 11pm deadline to add to the squad bound for Kazakhstan, they can still sign one player right up until 24 hours before kick-off.
If Toure isn’t thrown in to what could be a very challenging game, it’s likely that he’ll make his Hoops debut against Barcelona in the International Champions Cup match on Saturday 30 July.
In other Celtic team news, the Hoops are lining up a move for Fenerbahce full-back Hasan Ali Kaldirim.