Celtic face off against Hamilton tomorrow night at Celtic Park and Accies boss Brian Rice has been talking up the quality of stand-out star Ryan Christie, The Scottish Daily Mail report (03/12 print edition, page 84).

Rice worked with the attacking midfielder as a coach, back when the pair were still at Inverness Caledonian Thistle, so managed to witness up close just what kind of potential the player had as a teenager.

The Accies man was always a fan of the player and has given the player great credit for his rise at Celtic over the last 18 months.

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For Rice, the way he conducts himself reminds him of another Scottish Premiership star he worked with previously, Rangers midfielder Scott Arfield.

As quoted by The Scottish Daily Mail (03/12 print edition, page 84), he said: “He’s very similar to Scott Arfield, whom I also had as a kid at Falkirk. They both love their football and you can see that reflected in how hard they both worked.

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“They were the ones you had to drag off the training ground because they were always staying behind to do extra sessions and practise different things.

 

“It’s not a coincidence that the pair of them have kicked on because they put so much into their game. Ryan has been outstanding and he’s now a major player for Scotland as well.”

Celtic star Ryan Christie

(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Reaching new heights

When Christie burst onto the scene in Brendan Rodgers’ side last season it was obvious he was something of a gamechanger in the Celtic midfield. He had a confidence and work ethic more reminiscent of Kieran Tierney than Tom Rogic, but still had the skill and lethal finishing ability to make him more than just a battler.

This season he’s taking his all-round game to new heights again.

Currently, he stands alone as our top scorer, with 15 so far this term. That’s ahead of much-hyped stars such as Odsonne Edouard and James Forrest. While it’s not a personal competition, it is evident that he is one of our most crucial players right now.

With versatility, a level head and apparently a love for the Hoops, what more could we ask for in an attacking midfielder?

Not much more, let me tell you.

Rice’s Arfield comparison is a little bit of an odd one, but clearly he sees similar personality traits. Hopefully, this Sunday Christie can show he’s a class above anyone on the Hampden pitch, not least the Rangers man.

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