Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers has admitted he may have made an error by dropping Craig Gordon from his team last month as the Scotland international goalkeeper prepares to make his Champions League group stage debut against Manchester City tonight.
Gordon lost his place in the Celtic side last month, shortly after Rodgers signed Dutch veteran Dorus de Vries, who previously played under him for Swansea City.
De Vries, who was still recovering from an ankle injury when he joined the Scottish champions from Nottingham Forest, was regarded as more suited to Rodgers’ style of play which demands that his goalkeeper is comfortable with the ball at his feet.
But the 35-year-old has failed to convince during his five appearances since ousting Gordon from the number one spot, conceding 12 goals so far – a tally which includes the 7-0 defeat Celtic suffered against Barcelona in the Nou Camp two weeks ago in their opening Group C fixture.
De Vries suffered a chest injury and was replaced at half-time in Saturday’s 6-1 Premiership win over Kilmarnock, in which he was beaten by a 44-yard shot by Souleymane Coulibaly.
Rodgers has confirmed that Gordon will play tonight as Celtic attempt to re-energise their Champions League campaign against in-form English Premier League leaders City at Parkhead.
The Northern Irishman said: “Craig and I had a really good chat when I was going to make the change of goalkeeper last month.
“I maybe made the change too early. Dorus was injured and he’d come back. Maybe I pushed him in too early, to try and impose the way we want to work. So I take that responsibility.
“Dorus has trained the last couple of days but isn’t 100 per cent fit. There is no need to take a risk for this game when I’ve got an outstanding goalkeeper beside him. So Craig will play.”
For 33-year-old Gordon, it will be the fulfilment of a career-long ambition which first saw him miss out on Champions League group stage football when part of the