Everything that Brendan Rodgers said to Celtic TV following Celtic's 6-4 defeat to Yokohama F. Marinos at the Nissan Stadium over in Japan...

Brendan, that was certainly an entertaining evening for the fans here in Japan. From a manager's point of view, how do you assess that 90 minutes?

It was a tough schedule for us in terms of arriving here so quick and then playing a game against a team that you can see is a good team and are pretty much three-quarters of the way through their season. It was perfect for what we needed. We still - as you can see - are a long way from where our fitness levels need to be at, so there’s still lots of work to do on that front. From a technical perspective and also when you see the goals we give away from having good possession of the ball and giving away cheap goals and continue to work on the technical structure of the team. So yeah, some really good moments. I thought Daizen (Maeda) was outstanding in the game - in every aspect. His running, his touch, his finishing – he looked absolutely outstanding, so really, really pleased for him. The main priority was our fitness and how it will have benefitted from tonight.

We’ll stick on Daizen for a little moment. Much of this trip was billed about the five Japanese players returning to their home country – tonight it was Tomoki (Iwata) and Daizen returning to Yokohama and to put on a display like that – for Daizen to score a hattrick – there must be so much personal pride and from yourself so much pride in his performance?

Yeah, and also from Tomoki as well – I thought he was excellent. He played at right-back, a position he hasn’t played in so much, but he has played it here (Yokohama) before. I thought he did very, very well. I think overall for the two boys I was pleased for them to come back to their home country, and they obviously got a lovely reception from the supporters. Like you said, Daizen was amazing in all aspects. I’ve been impressed with him from afar but he was very good.

READ MORE: Celtic v Yokohama F. Marinos analysis as Maeda shines in defeat

Pre-season - as you said before - the matches is about building fitness ahead of the league campaign starting in just two and a half weeks’ time, so tell us a little bit more again about the importance of this fixture against a real top-quality opposition and what this can do for the team going forward into the next couple of weeks?

Yeah, I just think that it’s a step up. We played two games behind closed doors and again each game you’re stepping up the performance level. But we can’t lose track of the priority at this stage – you can never go on results, and like I said, it was a good game to build that fitness tonight and obviously you could see how much that bit sharper they (Yokohama) were, and that just comes from games and we’ll get to that point. We have to focus on our physicality and hopefully that certainly will improve over the next couple of weeks.

The pre-season games also provide an opportunity to see how the players are adapting to the slight changes that you might be making to the patterns of play. How do you think they handled the changes that you’re trying to bring and also some of the in-game tactical decisions that you’re making as well?

I think that they coped well. I think you can see whenever it works well – some of the patterns and then penetrating the space in behind. You’re also trying to attract opponents out and then counter them with the ball – which they did that very well. And then other moments whenever we were hesitant with the ball and maybe we didn’t get our pass away quick enough – and also we made mistakes which is something we need to eradicate in the game. That is what pre-season is for – to flush out all of those mistakes and getting your levels of fitness up and then you build through that over the course of pre-season.

Now we head off to Osaka for the final match of this tour of Japan. What do you hope to get out of these final few days in Japan and from that final match against Gamba Osaka?

We wanted to push a number of players tonight and so you could see by the time they’re coming off after 65 minutes – I think we conceded just before that – you could see the tiredness in their legs. We needed to get them through that. Come the weekend, we’ll probably go back to two 45 minutes (for each team) because of the heat and everything else. That will allow us to get in a good place physically after this trip and then over the following weeks, we can really ramp it up. A lot of work for us still to do – enjoyable work – and we’ll look forward to our next challenge.