Honduras boss Reinaldo Rueda has moved to ease fears over the fitness of Celtic star Luis Palma.
The wide man has impressed in recent weeks but Brendan Rodgers will have been on red alert after Palma picked up a knock going into the CONCACAF Nations League semi-final action clash with Mexico. The Scottish Premiership champions already have injury woes going into the return of domestic action on Saturday when the Hoops face off against Motherwell with Reo Hatate, Liel Abada and Daizen Maeda all remaining sidelined as fans await an update on the fitness of Kyogo Furuhashi.
But it appears that 23-year-old Palma remains in contention for Celtic’s showdown against Stuart Kettlewell’s Steelmen following Rueda’s latest update. Asked about the fitness of the winger going into Tuesday’s night’s clash by Honduran outlet La Presna, Rueda said: “Fortunately he is responding very well, and has overcome the discomfort and is ready for the game.”
Matt O’Riley caught the eye during his international debut for Denmark despite falling to defeat to Northern Ireland. And Denmark manager Kasper Hjulmand insisted he had no hesitation playing O’Riley from the start after seeing his performances for the Hoops this term.
He said: “Matt has been in the system for a while. We have had him with us for a long time and have seen him a lot. The last two summers there has been a bit of voluntary training around June and Matt just comes over immediately. He has been good for the Under 21s and he has taken extra steps this autumn with his club, especially in the European matches. We wanted to see him in action. He is a great midfield talent that we would like to see in our squad.”
Another name on international duty was Liam Scales – who started both of Ireland’s games to round off their double-header. And former Celtic star Charlie Mulgrew reckons he is in the running for a the Premiership Player of the Year award already.
He told told stocklytics.com: “Liam’s definitely up there with Kyogo, Calum McGregor and Matt O’Riley. He’s been there when it has counted, and it’s still quite early days in the season, but I’m sure he’ll want to stay in there and win stuff, and there’s no reason why he can’t if he continues to perform the way he has.”
Elsewhere, Celtic have been linked with a swoop for South African teen sensation Luke Baartman. The Cape Town Spurs striker has burst on to the scene this season and earned rave reviews for his performances. At just 17 the youngster is one for the future and it’s understood the Hoops would face competition from English clubs for his signature.