Brendan Rodgers has urged Celtic followers to get life like over the membership’s European ambitions.
Scotland’s champions reached their final UEFA last after they misplaced to Jose Mourinho’s Porto in Seville in 2003.
Nevertheless, talking earlier than the primary leg of a frightening Europa League last-32 conflict with Zenit St Petersburg, Rodgers fears the quickly altering monetary local weather of European soccer might render hopes of one other Seville season unlikely.
Brendan Rodgers has instructed Celtic followers to rein of their hopes for European glory this season
‘There are two components,’ stated the Northern Irishman. ‘The sport has modified and Celtic have modified.
‘Look again on the gamers Celtic had then. Celtic have been taking a few of the greatest gamers from the English Premier League.
‘They have been bringing Chris Sutton up right here, John Hartson up right here, Lenny (Neil Lennon) up right here.
‘They have been bringing Paul Lambert again from Dortmund. These are prime, prime gamers.
‘So the monetary local weather is completely completely different now to what it was again then for Celtic.
‘There can be all the time be expectation right here. We all the time need to struggle and, like our predecessors, attempt to do the easiest that we will.
‘However once you evaluate it to that, soccer and Celtic have modified lots.’
The Parkhead membership often featured amongst the highest 5 highest wage payments in British soccer in the course of the Martin O’Neill period.
Rodgers believes any hopes of replicating their run to the UEFA Cup last in 2003 are unlikely
‘It must have been,’ added Rodgers ‘You are taking John Harton, Sutty and these boys. Sutty got here from Chelsea.’
Celtic introduced wholesome interim monetary outcomes final week.
Figures to 31 December confirmed a rise in income of 16.eight per cent to £71.5million, and a rise in pre-tax revenue from £18.6m to £19.5m – reflecting the worth of Champions League soccer.
Addressing the concept that it must be serving to Celtic compete in Europe, nevertheless, Rodgers argued: ‘Come on. The purpose is that the membership is run very, very effectively.
‘You possibly can spend the cash – but it surely’s the gamers coming to Scotland which is the massive issue.
‘It is wages, it is astroturf pitches and all this. There are a number of the explanation why a participant would or would not come.
‘What the stability sheet exhibits is that the membership, the establishment, is being run very, very effectively. They spend cash however they need to run it sensibly. I do not suppose it’s going to ever return to what it was 15 years in the past.’
Tonight’s opponents spent round £80m in the summertime, playmaker Leandro Paredes their greatest purchase at £20m from Roma.
Requested if Roberto Mancini’s facet needs to be considered favourites to succeed in the final 16 Rodgers, answered: ‘Sure. I by no means say that calmly.
Rodgers faces Roberto Mancini’s Zenit St Petersburg within the final 32 of the Europa League
‘I all the time suppose that we’re Celtic…. however I’ve all the time been life like.
‘I believe that I’ve all the time been a realist and once you have a look at their (Zenit’s) funding and the extent of gamers they’ve they may count on to undergo.
‘We’ve got to discover a approach and we are going to see if we will get a consequence.’
Different potential opponents within the final 32 included Salzburg, Villarreal, Braga, Atalanta and Viktoria Plzen.
Addressing the view that Zenit have been a more durable draw than Celtic might need landed, Rodgers stated: ‘Pay attention, I believe you get to the final 32 and they’re all the time going to be powerful video games.
‘There are groups which can be successful their group levels and qualification for the Europa League.
‘There are groups popping out of Champions League and they’re all the time going to be powerful video games.’