Celtic news: McAvennie tips Laxalt to start against Rangers

Frank McAvennie has tipped Celtic manager Neil Lennon to drop Greg Taylor for the first Old Firm clash of the season this weekend.

The former Hoops and St Mirren striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, expects new signing Diego Laxalt to start against Rangers at the 22-year-old’s expense.

Taylor has 12 appearances to his name this season, all starts, having adopted a more advanced left-wing back role of late after Neil Lennon opted to switch to a 3-5-2 formation.

Laxalt, 27, arrived on a season-long loan deal from AC Milan last week to provide competition for Taylor following Boli Bolingoli’s exit.

McAvennie is adamant that Laxalt will be able to handle the pressure of the Old Firm having played for the Serie A giants.

“I think the new boy Laxalt will start,” he told Football Insider.

“I think he will come straight in for Greg Taylor because you do not get to Inter and AC Milan if you are not an exceptional player.

“The experience of playing in that derby will stand him in good stead, you can imagine when the San Siro is full.

“His pedigree is there so I would put him straight in and I think he will do well.” 

Lennon will have to pick from a depleted squad this weekend with Ryan Christie, Odsonne Edouard, Nir Bitton and Hatem Abd Elhamed all currently isolating as a result of Covid-19.

However, Edouard could be declared fit to face Rangers on Saturday with his 10-day isolation period coming to an end on Friday.

In other Celtic news, never-before-seen player tipped for debut amid big Covid updates.