"We really trust their judgement of young players"; Thankful manager talks up loan link with Celtic

By John McGinley

February 18, 2022

Airdrie boss Ian Murray is delighted to have forged a loan link with Celtic recently, having taken a number of players from the Bhoys to Scottish League One this season.

Kerr McInroy had a successful spell there earlier in the campaign while Brody Paterson and Jonathan Afolabi have recently made the move.

Murray is delighted with the impact of Paterson in particular and sounds thankful the loans from Celtic have allowed him to bolster his promotion pushing squad.

Speaking to The Daily Record, he said: “It’s one of those things in football where it seems to be a good fit for both clubs at the moment. We really trust their judgement of young players, they seem to trust our management of young players.

“I thought Brody was excellent, I really did. I saw really positive signs in his first game against Clyde, I saw more signs last week, and I think there’s loads of improvement in him.

“He’s at a good level already, but he’s one of those guys who wants to learn, wants to improve. His energy up and down that flank is a natural energy that he brings to the team, and he has fitted in seamlessly.

“It feels like we’ve got loads of players now, but we’re just catching up with a lot of the other squads. Covid has been a problem for every team, injuries on top of that, and I think it’s a vital time in the season just to reinforce us, towards the end of February, with areas that we felt we had to strengthen. It’s a complete squad game, and I think the players realise that.”

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20-year-old Paterson has also impressed for Celtic B this season. He now has the chance of regular football between now and the end of the season in League One.

His contract at the Bhoys is due to expire in 2023 so this summer will be a big one for him in terms of sorting out his long-term future. He’ll obviously be eyeing making an impact in Ange Postecoglou’s squad.

Afolabi’s contract also expires next year and while he’s struggled on various loans over the last couple of years, it’s also a big chance for him to make a goalscoring name for himself in a strong-performing team.

In other news, Video: The brilliant Kyogo moment at Celtic Park last night you may have missed.