Brendan Rodgers has absolved Mikael Lustig and Scott Brown of any blame after they were accused of a lack of class by Aberdeen as they celebrated the League Cup final win on Sunday.

Dons skipper Graeme Shinnie was furious after the game, claiming Lustig goaded teenager Lewis Ferguson while his own long standing feud with Celtic captain Brown continued to bubble.

Shinnie refused to shake the hand of Brown after the game while Pittodrie manager Derek McInnes and Lustig were also involved in a heated exchange.

Rodgers, though, has exonerated his players of any wrong-doing.

“It is disappointing,” he said.

“I understand the emotion if you lose a game of that magnitude and when you want something so much. I didn’t see Mikael Lustig goad the boy Ferguson at all.

“I watched the game back when I went home and I think that there is something right towards the end when the end when the ball is in the corner.

“The referee blows the whistle and it looks like the end of the game and Mika celebrates – as you would having won a Cup Final – but as he is walking forward he realises that it is not the end of the game. I don’t think there was any goading.

“If you look at us as a team and you look at out records, I think we are a very sporting team considering that every games we play is a huge pressure game. Every game is a Cup Final not just The Cup Finals.

“The players and their record and what they are from a discipline perspective is exemplary. So I can’t agree with that. For some players, they will give it out and you have to be ready to take it.”

Rodgers also aimed a thinly veined criticism towards Dons boss McInness for his part in the altercation with Lustig.

“I also say that if you are a manager on the side of the field, and I say this generically, that if you are a manager who gets involved with players if something comes back to you then you have to be ready to take that,” he said.

“I don’t go down the route that we lack any of those qualities. It is not something I would agree with.”

Meanwhile, Rodgers has also insisted that those who play against Brown and those who play with him have an entirely concept of him as a player and as a man.

“If he [Shinnie] played with him and worked with him then I am sure that Graeme would see him as one of the best professionals that he has come across,” said Rodgers.

“In the game Browny, like some players, they become a different character when they go on the field and there are a lot of players like that.

“There is a lot of small talk that you never hear of. It is on the field it happens. Like Jonny Hayes, before he came he would probably have had an opinion of Scott and I guarantee you that if you asked him now it would be the total opposite now.”

Celtic head to Fir Park this evening with Rodgers ready to ring the changes.

“There is just absolutely no way the same sort of group of players can given the energy and intensity into the game which we demand,” said the 45-year-old.

“So there’ll definitely be changes between now and the end of the year to try and ensure our performance level is at the highest possible. Dedryck [Boyata] is out but we’ve got other players to step up to the mark and hopefully perform to the same level.”