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20th Oct, 2016 | 7:07pm

Brown identifies two key Celtic players ahead of Rangers clash

By Dominic Toner

Scott Brown believes that Celtic pair Moussa Dembele and Leigh Griffiths are an important part of the team.

Celtic face Old Firm rivals Rangers on Sunday in the Scottish League Cup semi-final and will be desperate to bounce back from a disappointing showing midweek.

The Scottish champions were beaten 2-0 by Borussia Monchengladbach in the Champions League, with defender Kolo Toure making errors in the build-up for both crucial moments.

Celtic captain Brown has backed his team to respond against Rangers and has identified the strength of Dembele and Griffiths.

“We have brought in some great players and that has helped,” Brown said, as quoted by the Scottish Sun. “We have pace all over the team.

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“We have Moussa Dembele who is scoring goals as well, we have Griff (Griffiths) who scored 40 goals last season, so we are in a lot stronger place than what we were last season.”

Griffiths and Dembele are both blessed with good pace and have shown great goal scoring qualities in Scotland.

Griffiths, 26, has struggled to land a starting role this season and completed 90 minutes in just five of his 14 appearances.

The striker was in phenomenal form last season and fired Celtic to the league title, scoring 40 goals in 51 appearances across all competitions.

He has struggled to replicate that form this campaign but may be handed the opportunity by manager Brendan Rodgers in the League Cup.

Dembele has made a great start since his summer arrival from Fulham, scoring 13 goals in his first 19 appearances.

He has replaced Griffiths as the preferred striker and will hope to continue his good form.

Celtic completed a comfortable 5-1 win against Rangers in their league meeting this season and will be hoping for another positive result.

In other Celtic team news, Dembele has given a Twitter verdict following the club’s European defeat.