Celtic news: McLeish bemoans losses in Rangers clash

Alex McLeish insists all five new Celtic signings have a point to prove ahead of Saturday’s derby clash against Rangers. 

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Gers and Scotland manager claims that the new arrivals must repay the faith shown by manager Neil Lennon after he praised their captures.

Speaking to BBC Sport last week, the Northern Irish boss claimed that Celtic came out the window “very, very strong” and insisted that he was “delighted” with the Hoops’ business.

Celtic signed Albian Ajeti, Vasilios Barkas and David Turnbull on permanent deals, while Shane Duffy and Diego Laxalt both joined on loan.

Lennon will be missing no fewer than three of his senior squad for Saturday’s showdown after Ryan Christie, Hatem Abd Elhamed and Nir Bitton were forced into self-isolation over the international break.

McLeish believes that there will be added pressure on the new arrivals when Rangers visit Parkhead and insists they will need to repay their manager’s faith with their performances.

McLeish told Football Insider: “Neil will be disappointed at not having his best men but this is what Neil said, himself publicly, that he feels they made some great business in the transfer window.

“This is the time these guys have to come to the fore and show the manager he was right about who he invested in during the summer window. 

“I think people will be waiting to see if Edouard begins the game but also if Neil brings in his new replacements, how good a contribution will they be able to make to Celtic’s cause.

“The international games are piling on top of each other. It’s a big strain on players in terms of how many games they’re cramming in.”

In other Celtic news, Brown gutted by major player development in build-up to Rangers clash.