Scots Coming To The Fore At Celtic

One complaint I had of Celtic in recent years has been their lack of Scottish talent.

They always had one or two starters and then maybe a few more within the squad. But under Brendan Rodgers the Scottish players are really making a big impression and are becoming integral to the team.

Captain Scott Brown is still one of the best midfielders in the country. Since Rodgers arrival, Brown seems to have found another level and is consistently solid for the team. He’s a leader that gets more from those around him with his battling displays and his encouragement when he thinks things are slipping.

In goals, Craig Gordon is once again shining in-between the sticks. Chelsea wanted to sign him in January but I was glad to see him stay in Glasgow as he’ll continue to get more game time there. The Scottish international goalie has terrific reflexes and gives those in front of him confidence. His levels seemed to slip at the start of last term and I don’t think Brendan was fully confident in Gordon but fair play to the thirty-four year old, he worked hard and gained his manager’s trust.

In midfield you have two talents in Stuart Armstrong and Callum McGregor.

Armstrong’s energetic performances last season won him plenty of plaudits, admirers from down south and international recognition. Rodgers has given him more licence to dictate games and get on the ball. Nice range in his passing and he’s also got a keen eye for a goal!

Twenty-four year old McGregor has started this campaign with a bang and scored on opening day against Hearts. This really could be his breakout year. Offers plenty of versatility in the middle of the park and is another one who can help out by getting his fair share of goals. He’s also very smart with his runs and finding space inside the opposition’s half.

Rodgers praised McGregor highly after the Hearts win:

“He quietly goes about his work and is an outstanding player. We don’t sing too many songs about him but he comes in and trains well every day and can play in different positions.”

We all know Leigh Griffiths and what qualities he brings. He’s another Scot who has improved under the Celtic manager. A prolific scorer, he’s also getting better at leading the line. Full of good runs and he works the opposing defenders. Just needs to make sure his attitude doesn’t dip during the season.

Sometimes you forget about James Forrest because he’s been in and around the Celtic first team for so long. The winger has stalled a few times during his Celtic Park career, mainly due to injuries and sometimes due to confidence issues. But he still possess the skill and pace that causes havoc in the final third. Scored the valuable goal against Rosenborg in the Champions League qualifier earlier in the month. Has found a new lease of life in the last twelve months but still needs to consistently be better than average.

Then you have the real start… Kieran Tierney!

The twenty-year old is clearly a big Hoops fan and is already a fans favourite at Parkhead. Obviously he’s at his best at left-back, but he has the intelligence and commitment to play on the right or in the centre when asked.

Strong and smart in the tackle, he’s also great at getting forward. You can see him growing as a player as each game goes by. Doesn’t seem phased in the big games and a consistent performer during the treble winning season.

No doubt he’ll already have big suitors in England and in Europe but I hope he stays at Celtic Park because you can still see him progressing in a Hoops jersey.

Rodgers clearly agrees:

“He’s a talent who is only going to get better,”

Kieran’s loving life with the Scottish Premiership champions. Just look at his goal last night against Kilmarnock and you can see he’s constantly growing in confidence. The armband also looks perfect on his arm.

You then have more talent coming through the youth system. Things do look a lot brighter for Scottish talent plying their trade in Lennoxtown under Brendan Rodgers.

It’s also a great thing for our national team as these are players well verse in winning and they can make a difference to Scotland, just look at the game at Hampden against England!

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