Celtic v Rosenborg: Manager-less Norwegians battling turmoil
|Celtic v Rosenborg, Champions League second qualifying round|
|Venue: Celtic Park, Glasgow Date: Wednesday 25 July Kick-off: 19:45 BST|
|Coverage: Live commentary on BBC Radio Scotland MW's Sportsound and online. Live text commentary on the BBC Sport website and app|
Rosenborg travel to Glasgow this week reeling from the shock of their long-serving manager's sacking, a reported player revolt and an uncertain future.
The Norwegian side tackle Celtic in the second round of Champions League qualifying on Wednesday, six days after dispensing with the services of boss Kare Ingebrigsten and his assistant Erik Hoftun.
The pair led Rosenborg to the last three top-flight Eliteserien titles. Reports in the Norwegian media say the squad reacted angrily to the dismissals, unsuccessfully petitioning the club's board to have them reinstated.
Norwegian football writer Jonas Giaever says the sackings, which followed a dramatic first-round qualifying win over Iceland's Valur, came "completely out of the blue".
"The firing was a complete shock," Giaever told BBC Scotland.
"The assistant manager [Hoftun] thought that Ingebrigtsen was joking about the firing when he told him."
The Lerkendal Stadion in Trondheim has staged some famous European nights.
Rosenborg beat the mighty AC Milan at the San Siro and put Real Madrid's Galacticos to the sword when they came to Norway in 1997.
But it has now been 11 years since the Norwegians made it to the Champions League proper.
They sit second in the Eliteserien, two points behind leaders Brann, and face Celtic in a rematch of last year's third qualifying round tie, which Brendan Rodgers' team won 1-0 over two legs.
Rosenborg will be managed this time around by Rini Coolen, the academy director who has taken interim charge of the side following Ingebrigtsen's exit.
"Many people have questioned why they fired Ingebrigtsen now and didn't wait until the season was over [in December]," Giaever added.
"There are rumours that the club want to bring in a bigger name from Europe but there are not a lot of managers available who could take Rosenborg to the next level."
Despite the turmoil and the absence through injury of influential winger Samuel Adegbenro, Giaever says this Rosenborg squad are more talented than the group that succumbed to a James Forrest goal last year.
He believes former Arsenal striker Nicklas Bendtner, who scored the decisive penalty against Valur, could be a pivotal figure.
"They are a better team, more experienced with a lot of quality," Giaever said.
"Bendtner is a slow starter but still has immense quality. He may be looking for a move elsewhere so will be 100% motivated to perform well against Celtic."
Celtic have Norwegian representation of their own in centre-back Kristoffer Ajer.
"We pay attention to the team as Kristoffer Ajer is someone we see potentially as a future captain of Norway," he said. "Celtic have many good players like Moussa Dembele and Scott Sinclair.
"In Norway, we are aware of the magnitude of Celtic and respect them."