Celtic haven’t exactly had much luck on the injury front this season.
Of course, it would be hard to put the blame for the Hoops’ disastrous campaign on that alone. After all, their on-field displays at Parkhead have been rather pathetic.
That being said, make any team have to deal with an injury to a player as important as James Forrest and they’d struggle.
The Scot missed a period of 157 days and 35 matches with an ankle problem from September to February and has only just returned from another injury to the same part of his body.
It will be a welcome boost to have the winger in full flow again but one player they’ll definitely be without this week is Scott Bain.
The goalkeeper has been ever-present since John Kennedy was named interim manager but he will miss the clash with St Johnstone on Wednesday due to a finger issue.
Speaking in his pre-match press conference, Kennedy commented: “Scott Bain picked up a finger injury in the previous game against Rangers. We’re not taking any risks with that. There’s one or two others, again, who we won’t risk. But nothing major, we’re pretty much working with the same squad give or take one or two.”
Bain may not have been the most comfortable between the sticks this term but it still represents a huge blow to have him absent.
The stopper was at fault during Celtic’s battering in Prague during their dreary Europa League run while he could have done a lot better in the recent Old Firm derby.
As Alfredo Morelos bullied Scott Brown to one side and sent a rasping effort towards goal, Bain was beaten all ends up. It was a powerful effort but it still crashed straight through him.
Unfortunately, his absence means that Vasilis Barkas will come into the XI. The Greek has deserved a second opportunity for a while now but he’s hardly been a consistent figure either.
Barkas has also been a calamity in goal and was another to pick up a slice of the blame in Europe.
When Celtic suffered defeat to AC Milan at the San Siro, the ‘keeper somehow let a Hakan Calhonoglu free-kick fly into the side of the goal that he was standing in.
Barkas has lacked authority and thus, the Bhoys defence shouldn’t be overly confident with him behind them either. This will his first start since January so expect him to be a little rusty too.
Kennedy will likely be gutted to lose someone he’s placed so much faith in since being handed the reins.
AND in other news, McKay must wield the axe on 5ft9 Celtic dud, Sutton dubbed him the “new Ryan Christie”…