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Rodgers speaks out after star’s imminent exit

Brendan Rodgers has spoken out after reports that striker Moussa Dembele is set to leave the club.

The forward has been prolific in front of goal in the two years he has spent at the club, and it always seemed rather inevitable that he would depart at some point amid heavy interest from many top European clubs.

It is believed that Ligue 1 side Lyon are set to sign the France U21 international, although no fee is understood to be agreed as of yet.

It’s an all too familiar story for the Hoops, moulding a talent for a couple of years before they leave the club in search of a different league.

Celtic have seen various top stars leave over the years, including Virgil van Dijk, Fraser Forster and Victor Wanyama.

And it seems Moussa Dembele is the next key figure at Parkhead to end stay at the club for a bigger task.

However, Rogers understands that despite the frustration his exit will cause, it is indeed just how football goes – and Celtic can deal with it.

“I think it’s understanding where Celtic is at. There’s no secret,” said Rodgers.

“It’s very difficult to build something here because every two years there is going to be recycle. That’s the way it is.

“Of course, you’d love to be able to say we want to keep some of these players for five, six, seven years but it’s not the reality, especially now when players can get offered three or four times the money they are on here.

“It’s a really short career. I think it’s difficult for players. There comes a certain time.

“With Virgil, there was a possibility the summer before for him to go. He played on for a year and then got his move a year after.

“It’s worth mentioning that Moussa has been brilliant in my time here. It has been perfect.

“When I met with him a few years ago, I explained how it could go in terms of him improving and becoming a winner and showing that he can play at the highest level.

“All these steps have been taken. It’s something you have to deal with.

“It’s great that you have players with lots of value that can move on, but I think that Celtic is a club with cycles and this is the first of them in my time.

“It’s football. It happens. You just have to deal with it best you can whether Moussa stays or goes.”
[Quotes sourced via Daily Record]