Moussa Dembele: Celtic striker 'highly unlikely' to face Rangers - Brendan Rodgers
Celtic striker Moussa Dembele is "highly unlikely" to play in Sunday's Old Firm derby amid transfer speculation, says boss Brendan Rodgers.
A "significant" bid for the Lyon target, 22, was rejected this week and Rodgers does not expect to lose the Frenchman before the Scottish window shuts at midnight on Friday.
Dembele sat out Thursday's Europa League win over Suduva.
"Moussa was in today with the squad but nothing further," Rodgers said.
The France Under-21 striker, two years into a four-year contract, made a brief appearance on the Lennoxtown training pitch before retreating indoors.
"It's very important that I protect the environment as well," Rodgers explained. "We have to have everyone working.
"He was best to be inside this morning. I just wanted to have a chat with him and it was best for him to go inside and let the others work."
'The plan was for Moussa to sign for four years'
Dembele posted two tweets on Thursday from his verified account, containing messages which read: "A man, without his word, is nothing. A real man keeps his word", and "A lie has many variations, the truth has none".
Rodgers said he would be "disappointed" were the posts aimed at him, adding "the plan was that Moussa signed for four years".
"I felt at the time we signed him that if he was playing to the level and was improving, there would be opportunities for him," the Celtic boss said.
"It's been a delicate situation this week because going back home to France, playing in the Champions League again, has probably appealed to him.
"There's a way these things happen. We all would love it to go to plan all the time, but if it doesn't, we have to continue to work. It's part of the game nowadays."