Celtic's Tom Rogic: Rangers boss Pedro Caixinha feeling the heat
Caixinha went head-to-head with Celtic captain Brown at half-time of Saturday’s first Old Firm game of the campaign to protest at what he claimed was a deliberate elbow in the face of his striker Alfredo Morelos from the midfielder. Rogic, who scored the first goal in Celtic’s ultimately comfortable 2-0 win, has questioned Caixinha’s conduct and insisted the Scottish champions’ own manager Brendan Rodgers would never indulge in that type of behaviour.
The Australian international midfielder also offered a robust defence of Brown’s part in proceedings on a day which saw Celtic open up an eight-point gap between themselves and Rangers in the Scottish Premiership after just seven rounds of fixtures.
“That’s up to him,” said Rogic when asked about Caixinha’s face-off with Brown. “You certainly wouldn’t see our manager getting involved in anything like that. I think that maybe says a little bit about their [Rangers’] situation and where they are.
“I don’t know what the Rangers manager saw. That’s not really my place to comment. But Scott’s a good leader. I don’t think [he crosses the line sometimes].
“He is massive for us. You have your captain leading by example in almost all of our matches. He seems to win every 50-50 he goes into.
“He puts himself about for tackles and when the ball comes to him, he is calm and composed. He gets us set up on the right foot. He’s been at this club for years now. He is a leader who leads by example.
“He has been an exceptional player for a number of years now. He will be one that, when he stops playing, people will look back and see him as a real legend of the club.
“We are fortunate to have a captain like him to play under. It makes our job easier.
“He’s been at the club since day one for me. He’s one of the few who are still here since I joined. He doesn’t always have to say something to you, he just leads by example. It rubs off on his team-mates.”
Rogic was reluctant to offer an opinion when asked whether Caixinha’s new-look Rangers side were any closer to being able to provide a greater challenge to Celtic’s dominance this season.
“That is for other people to judge,” he said. “We just focus on ourselves. But I think that is pretty evident. It speaks for itself.
“I don’t know how Rangers compare to last season. They have brought in a lot of players, but for us it is not too important to worry about the players they have brought in. We just focus on ourselves.
“We feel as if we are getting better game after game and improving in all areas of the park. That is the most important thing. If we can keep doing that we will keep winning.”