Brendan Rodgers hails Celtic for the 3 things managers crave as emotional boss sees greatest dream come true

Emotional Brendan Rodgers led Celtic to a third successive title at Rugby Park and then admitted his greatest ever dreams have just come true.

The rampant champions wrapped up the defence of their top flight crown with a spectacular five goal thrashing of Kilmarnock to cross the finishing line with a game to spare. And afterwards, a teary eyed Rodgers, claimed he’s been imagining what it would feel like to win another Scottish championship since leaving the club for Leicester City five years ago. Rodgers said: “I would have been dreaming of that moment when I was away and hoping it would happen again. Now that it has, it’s a really good feeling.”

The away support chanted the Northern Irishman’s name at various times throughout this whopping 5-0 win and Rodgers took a bow in front of them as his players celebrated their latest league triumph. That moment marked a major turn around in a relationship which started off badly when Rodgers was appointed as Ange Postecoglou’s replacement last summer, having been accused of abandoning the club first time around.

He said: “It felt really good. It was about the team and the support staff. There was so much in the first six months. It felt a bit awkward for everyone. There were lots of challenges from a management perspective, tedious stuff that took place. I’ve not had that before in my career.

Brendan Rodgers celebrates Celtic's second goal -Credit:SNS Group
Brendan Rodgers celebrates Celtic's second goal -Credit:SNS Group

“The challenge was that the voice of the team was right no matter the negativity. We stay on point, keep our focus and preparation knowing the players would get to a level and intensity to which my teams normally play and as if by magic that’s how it’s ended up, That spirit in the team was key. You have to have that.”

And Rodgers was blown away by the standard of his side’s performance as they romped over the finishing line at Rugby Park - having already lost twice at the same ground earlier in the season. He said: “The performance was amazing. I’m so proud of how they’ve dealt with the pressure and how they stepped it up against a Kilmarnock team coached so well and who are so well organised. Everything you want in a team - speed, creativity, power. It was a joy to watch to make us champions. I feel really proud.

“All title wins feel great but this feels special after everything we have been through. That performance was so good on a difficult surface. Amazing. It was incredible. It was everything I wanted from the team. It feels like the beginning of the season for us! I am so pleased for the players because there has been a lot of negativity around them this season, right back to August.

“You must never doubt. I am an experienced manager and I see the humility in how they work. They have delivered when the pressure has been on. When the pressure was on, we got the performances and the results.”

Celtic got off to a flyer when Adam Idah opened the scoring after just five minutes. And they had raced into a three goal lead by half-time with Daizen Maeda and James Forrest getting their names on the score sheet.

Man of the match Matt O’Riley then rounded off a thrilling display with a sumptuous second half double. And Rodgers said: “Adam showed the pace, power and touch and he bullied their centre halves. He did so well for us. Matt’s goals and assists and work rate have been amazing. But it was a collective performance - we were brilliant in the game. We were at the top of our game.”