Barry Ferguson worried about Celtic star James Forrest being unleashed in derby

By John McGinley

April 17, 2021

Former Rangers captain Barry Ferguson sounds concerned about the damage Celtic winger James Forrest can do in the derby on Sunday.

Forrest limped out of last week’s encounter against Livingston with back, hip and hamstring stiffness.

He’s still getting up to full speed after a six-month ankle surgery lay-off.

Celtic haven’t been able to call upon Forrest’s services in any of the derbies so far this season. He’s missed all three.

John Kennedy and every other Celtic supporter are keeping fingers crossed he’ll beat a late fitness test to turn out in the Scottish Cup tomorrow.

Ferguson reckons if he makes the starting line-up, it’s our opponents who’ll be concerned.

Speaking on The Go Radio Football Show last night, the former Ibrox captain said: “For me it’s shown how much Celtic have missed him – he’s a top player.

“He can win games but also he does the dirty side brilliantly. When he’s not playing well he’ll give you 100 per cent for the team.

“He’s a real team player and you’ve seen the difference he’s made since he came back into the Celtic team in the last couple of weeks.

“He was really good, it was obviously a worry for John Kennedy when he came off injured but, listen, it’ll be a worry for Rangers if he’s fit to play on Sunday. James Forrest is a top player.”

James Forrest crucial to Celtic tactics v Rangers

Goals against Falkirk and Livingston have definitely demonstrated Forrest’s hunger to get back on top form.

If he’s out of tomorrow’s match, it could drastically alter John Kennedy’s plans for the fixture. We could see a formation change and a different way of approaching the midfield battle.

James Forrest celebrates scoring for Celtic vs Falkirk / (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

With Forrest included, expect to see him wide on the right flank with Mohamed Elyounoussi on the opposite side. Those two in the starting line-up would show real attacking intent.

If they can exploit the spaces in between centre-halves and full-backs, Rangers could be in for a long afternoon.

In other news, another rival is talking absolute nonsense about Celtic.