Celtic youngster Connor McBride signs for Stenhousemuir on loan

By David Walton

October 1, 2019

Celtic youngster Connor McBride has had his loan move to Stenhousemuir confirmed.

McBride will spend the next three months at Stenny before returning to Lennoxtown in January. He’s available to go straight into the Stenhousemuir first-team for this weekend’s clash with Cove Rangers.

He’s the first signing of new Stenhousemuir boss David Irons’ second spell at the club. McBride also spent his earlier years developing in the Stenny academy. Being a local Bhoy, McBride will undoubtedly be looking forward to turning out for the League Two side.

Connor McBride will spend the next several months plying his trade at Ochiview (Colin McPherson/Corbis via Getty Images)

Speaking on the official Stenhousemuir website, Stenny gaffer Irons thanked the Hoops for helping them get the deal over the line.

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“Thanks to Celtic for the opportunity to bring him in. We hope we can continue to play a positive role in his development for the benefit of Connor, Stenhousemuir and Celtic.

“He is a local lad and someone well known to the club. We hope that young people in the area can relate to him and enjoy coming to see him play for his local team.”

McBride will want to make an impression

McBride signed his first professional contract with Falkirk at just 16. He never made an appearance for the first-team squad, however, before signing for the Hoops.

As well as signing a full-time deal with the Scottish champions afterwards, McBride also made 12 appearances for Scotland at under-17 level. He’s one of the graduates of the Scottish FA Performance School.

Stenny currently sit fifth in League Two (Colin McPherson/Corbis via Getty Images)

McBride will be itching to take his first steps into senior football, and it will be a good education for him in League Two. At just 18, he has everything ahead of him. For a first club, this is a fine move for him to make at this stage of his career.

It’s exactly what Celtic should be looking to do for so many of the youngsters in their academy these days. Senior football is a far more productive learning experience than youth competitions. It’s undoubted that McBride will come back having learned a thing or two with Stenny.

Darren O’Dea will be keeping a close eye on McBride’s development (Tom Dulat/Getty Images)

Considering it’s a short-term loan, it will be interesting to see if there’s an extension should he perform well. But it’s a big move for him already.

Hopefully, he makes a big impact in a tough division.