Everything Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers said to the media, ahead of his side's match against Livingston on Saturday afternoon...

What have you tried to work on and stress to the players over the last few days since the defeat to Hearts?

It was a very disappointing performance and result for us but we spoke about reinforcing the strengths of our game and the importance of playing to those strengths. It has been a good week for reflection. You do your talking on the pitch and that's where we have done our work and we look to bring that positivity to the game tomorrow.

When we spoke after the Hearts match you talked about the lack of consistency and mentality and perhaps a lack of ambition and drive in some of the players. How have they responded to that? Have they acknowledged that there have been drop-offs?

It's all in your results. I think it is pretty clear. When you see the stages of the game when the tempo is up and down that is all about desire and mentality. The group are a fantastic group of players it is not a slant on any individual. This is what is required at a big club. When you prepare as well as they do then you have to have that work rate and mentality. You have to have it at a club like Celtic. It's about bringing consistency to the game. That's part of finding out what it is like to play for a club like Celtic. There is no drop-off. When the first whistle goes you have to have that intent, ambition and desire to win the game. That brings the tempo of your game up. For us, the tempo, especially at the beginning of the game (against Hearts) was nowhere near the level that we would expect. That's been our very, frank open conclusion on it. We look to be better going forward.

That said, has it given you some clarity over the last couple of weeks about who you would look to move on in the New Year? Has that prompted conversations in the last few days about what you will do then?

No. I have been very clear from when I came in. For me, it was about an observation in this opening period. I've been seeing players, sadly we have had players missing which has been a challenge for us. That has provided opportunities for other players but across the board, it has been a chance for me to assess where the squad is at. My feelings haven't changed in the last week or so. I knew where we needed to strengthen in the summer and I know where we need to strengthen in January and next summer.

READ MORE: Celtic's Liam Scales dismisses suggestions of 'cliques'

Can I ask you about Matt O'Riley? Our colleagues in Italy are suggesting that Inter Milan is looking at him and a few other clubs are keen on him as he's been very good this season. Is he one you fear you will struggle to retain?

I don't have any fear for any of the players. I am delighted for Matt that he has made a fantastic step forward this season as a Celtic player and in his career. That shows his focus and mentality. His training as well as the confidence he is taking into the games then he will always attract the interest of teams. I don't have any fear. He is a good guy and when you do that Matt does then you are always going to have interest that will come your way. For now, he is very much focused on performing for Celtic through until the break.

You will be desperate to keep a hold of him and all your key players as the title has now become a close race and you would want to keep a hold of all of your key players I would imagine, wouldn't you?

Yes. There is still such a long way to go. We were consistently good and then the last few weeks or so in the league we haven't been good enough. I cannot be any more clear than that. We want to add to the squad rather than take any away. The likes of Matt is a very important player for us.

The club have also confirmed that the Green Brigade are going to be back for the match. Just how important is it to have that unity in the stands behind the team and driving them forward?

It is everything. Especially at a club like Celtic. For the years I have known Celtic what makes them tick is the support that they give the team. It is such an emotional connection. Celtic's history is littered with goals and late goals and a big part of that is down to the fans and the whole stadium getting behind the team. That's what makes Celtic. When you have the manager, the supporters, and the players all on the same page then it is a real force to have in the game. The atmosphere hasn't been there for several weeks but that is the responsibility of everyone and we know that when the atmosphere is white hot at Celtic it makes it a really difficult place for teams to come and play. It gives the players that extra edge as well. For the guys to be back in there is no doubt that they've given an ambience in that corner section. The club allowed them the opportunity to be the first club in Britain to have a safe-standing area. Hopefully, they can go back in tomorrow and support the team and it is their responsibility as well as the rest of the stadium to get right behind the team and help us get a result.

Do you feel you have missed that atmosphere in the last few weeks as you have dropped five points at home and that is unusual? Has that been a factor do you think?

I don't know if it is specifically them but we have still had 60-odd thousand in the ground. The responsibility is for everyone. I think firstly I always look at the team and what can we do as a team to provide the football that can excite the supporters. That's what we always aim to do. Of course, Celtic is based around that collective spirit in the stands which drives the team forward. Either way, I just think it is really good news. There is no point in looking at the past. It is great news for them that they can get in and watch their team. If they want to support the team and the club then they are better off being inside it and cheering us on and hopefully, that brings us all together and we can look forward to the rest of the season.

You speak about how the club needs to be united for the club to be successful. Is that something you’ve always tried to foster at every club you’ve been at?

It is paramount for any successful club. Especially a top club where the intensity is so high. What makes a top club is when everyone is together. That spirit, that collective fight, everyone together pushing forward.

Daizen Maeda came back and came off the bench last week. Is he going to be a big player, given your talk on energy and desire?

He’s been fantastic in his time here. He maybe doesn’t get the credit that he deserves when he’s playing. Sometimes when that player is out of the team, you realise what is missed. From a coaching and managing perspective, we understand what he brings to the team. His non/stop energy and running. His quality and what he brings will be great to have back.

How close is Liel Abada to getting back?

He’s out on the grass running and with the medical team. It’s not imminent but he’s certainly in a really good place. Hopefully, sometime in the near future, he’ll be back in with the squad.

READ MORE: Why Celtic must keep an eye on the European Super League

Is there an outside chance that he’ll be fit before the winter break?

I haven’t thought about it. It’s just a day-by-day thing. We have to assess him as he goes along each day.

The club came out and put a firm stance on the Super League. What are your thoughts on that and what that means for the landscape of European football going forward? 

To be honest, I haven’t really seen a great deal of it if I’m totally honest. I've seen some headlines on it, but I haven’t listened to it. My feeling was back then that the game in Britain is very much based around the fans. I know there’s a commercial and economic element that clubs may want to push, but football is about the supporters and I’m pretty sure what they will want will be listened to again hopefully.

Brendan, you talked about coming in and assessing things at the club. That’s now six months you’ve been back, what are the key factors that you’ve identified as needing improved? When can we start to see those things being implemented?

I think it’s observation as much as anything. Coming in and observing a new group. I’m fairly comfortable with where we need to improve in order to get that dynamic of the team back to where I would want it to be. I think consistency is an important factor in that, but I think the squad will need improvement over these next couple of windows. Just certain profiles within the team. you can only do that at certain times. Overall I’ve been delighted to be back here and working with this group, which is a different group from when I was here previously. There are certainly elements of the team that we can be much better in.

Supporters are talking about a need for a change of formation, as teams seem to know how to play against you at the moment?

I’m not averse to that. I think you’ve seen already since I’ve come in a number of times we’ve changed structure and system and went with two players up top. It’s always dependent on the opponent and where you can actually break through against teams. Let’s say you have a back five and a team that’s sitting deep. I think our biggest thing last weekend was the speed of our game. The tempo in our game was way too slow. If you see an action when we went 2-0 down within those first few minutes the speed of the game went to another level but that has to be like that for the very first whistle. That’s the consistency I’m talking about. We’ve played games and started with a real hunger and desire. In other games it’s started too slowly, St Johnstone as an example. I don’t think it’s so much to do structurally, I think when you play against teams that are low on the field, you have to be quicker and dynamic in your movement. The speed of your movements, the speed of the ball, all these things all come together to tire out your opponent. Whether it’s two up front or three up front, whether you’re playing with one up top and two wide, you get two advanced midfield players you’ve virtually got five on the back-line against a back five, as opposed to having two strikers, you virtually have two wide players two number eights and a striker which gives you five along the back line. How we try to work at times is trying to make six on the back-line by getting a full-back up. It’s then when you get there it’s about then that being being decisive and having that combination that can break through. I still think there are certain things that when we don’t have certain players playing that the team misses in terms of dynamism, and that’s purely profile, as opposed to structure. The idea is to improve that.

READ MORE: Can Celtic's Tilio blossom at the Asia Cup? - video debate

Is there any other team news for ins and outs?

Yang should hopefully be okay for the game. He had been out with his shoulder. Odin (Thiago Holm) had been out and returned today as he’d been ill for a little while. He wouldn’t take part, I wouldn’t think, tomorrow. We just need to assess him. Apart from Yang, we’re pretty much the same squad.