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Mowbray praises Celtic defenders Thompson and Rogne

Celtic defenders Josh Thompson and Thomas Rogne
Thompson and Rogne limited United's chances in the 1-0 win

Centre-halves Josh Thompson and Thomas Rogne received praise from Celtic manager Tony Mowbray after they kept Dundee United at bay with a 1-0 win.

"I am pleased with the clean sheet and delighted with the two young centre-halves today," said the Celtic boss of 18-year-old Thompson and Rogne, 19.

"They got the job done. They are only here because they are good players.

"They are tender of years. They weren't bought for today but for tomorrow and yet they are doing the job."

Despite having rediscovered some of their impressive early-season form, United rarely threatened at Celtic Park.

And having leaked four goals in their last outing, against Aberdeen in a draw at Pittodrie, Mowbray was pleased to get the three points to cut Rangers' lead at the top of the Scottish Premier League to seven.

"Our philosophy is always to go and attack and try score and win football matches. You take the points and you move on to the next game," he said.

Mowbray was also quick to praise the contribution of match-winner Robbie Keane.

"His voice around the dressing room and on the pitch helps the team," he explained.

"He threatens in behind teams and, while we know he can play short and link the midfield with the strikers, his goal today was classic on the shoulder, playing off the back of defenders."

The next game for Celtic could not be tougher - away to Rangers next Sunday, but Mowbray is confident.

He added: "I believe in my team. In the two matches against Rangers, I felt we have been in the ascendancy and created the most chances.

"But football is about how many times you put it in the opposition's net, and Rangers have proved this season they are better than we are at that.

"We go into the game with a lot of confidence. We feel we'll go there and have enough of the ball to create chances.

"I'm sure the players who have slight knocks will be trying to force their way into my thinking in the next week."

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see also
Celtic 1-0 Dundee United
20 Feb 10 |  Scottish Premier

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