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Thistle boss says Celtic reserves are first-team 'clones'

Alan Archibald's side welcome the reigning champions to Firhill on Friday night.

Partick Thistle boss Alan Archibald says his side need not worry about Celtic making changes because Brendan Rodgers' reserves are "clones" of the first team.

The Jags host the reigning champions on Friday night in their second league fixture of the campaign.

The Firhill outfit have bounced back from an opening day defeat to Hibs at Easter Road by upsetting St Johnstone 3-0 in the League Cup on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, a youthful Celtic side were routing Kilmarnock 5-0.

Archibald has since reviewed footage of Celtic's performance and believes last season's "Invincibles" are even stronger than they were last year.

"Yes, they do (look stronger)," he said. "In terms of their squad, last year they made a few changes against us in one of the games and maybe weren't as strong.

"The other night I watched the game back and they were like clones, they've got guys coming in who are playing the exact same way, still pressing with a high tempo and great on the ball as well.

"It's a tough task but that's why it's important we just concentrate on Partick Thistle and don't look too much into whether Celtic are making changes, as you saw the other night they are very similar whoever plays."

Celtic are expected to rotate their line-up ahead of next Wednesday's crunch Champions League qualifier with Astana.

Archibald though believes his team have to concentrate on themselves, rather than focus on the strength of their opponent, having suffered a 5-0 defeat the last team Celtic visited Glasgow's west end.

He said: "It will be a tough task but we need to make sure we concentrate on ourselves.

"We got caught up, our last game we played them when they came to Firhill, and we showed them way too much respect.

"We stood off them, hardly made a challenge and they ran over the top of us."

He added: "So we need to make sure we are at our best and we are aggressive in the right way, that's making tackles not being silly but making sure we don't stand off them too much and play our own game.

"As you saw the other night against Kilmarnock they can make a number of changes but you can't really focus on who's going to be playing so we need to make sure we concentrate on ourselves and get our own game going."

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