Midfielder Callum McGregor has spoken to Neil Lennon about one day becoming the next Celtic captain.
The Parkhead star committed himself to the club for a further five years yesterday (Celticfc.net). He’ll now be contracted to Celtic Park until at least 2024. And throughout the last 12 months, he’s also tasted the captain’s role when Brown has been out.
The current captain is currently contracted to the Hoops himself until the summer of 2021. Broony has also stated in the past that he’ll hang up the boots when it runs out (Celtic TV).
That would leave a massive captain-shaped gap in the team. But speaking to the Scottish Sun, McGregor has stated that he’s held talks with Lenny about one day being the club’s on-field leader.
He said: “I have touched on that with the manager. Obviously it has become a bit more noticeable when Broony is having a rest or has come off, the armband has been passed to me.
“Playing in there alongside Broony has been such a massive learning curve for me in terms of everything — preparation, trying to help the team, as well as focusing on your own game.
“I don’t think there are many better to learn off than Broony. Whenever he isn’t playing, I try to step in and do that job.”
There is more than one potential leader at Celtic
You can’t argue with CalMac’s stats or commitment to the Celtic cause. Over the last 15 months he’s played just under 100 games for club and country – 69 last season, and already 28 in this campaign too. He certainly has the experience for it.
But let’s face it, he isn’t the only one who could potentially take the armband. There are other candidates out there.
For example, Kristoffer Ajer wouldn’t be a bad choice at all. He signed for the club back in 2016 as a development player before heading out on loan to Kilmarnock to fine-tune his game.
Celtic blessed with leadership
He’s returned and has become one of the first names on the team-sheet. Ajer is an absolute warrior on the pitch too, consistently fighting Celtic’s cause and contesting every decision. You’ll also regularly see him organising the backline. He has all the traits of a future leader.
Alongside him, you have a natural captain in Christopher Jullien. The towering Frenchman has been a Ligue 1 regular with the likes of Dijon, Auxerre, and Toulouse respectively. There won’t be many more experienced than him in the dressing room. Of course, the fact he’s just arrived at the club won’t help him.
You could also even argue that big Fraser Forster is a candidate. Granted, he arrived in the summer just like Jullien, but his first spell should dismiss that from holding him back. Forster has managed over 200 appearances for Celtic and has played in both the Champions League and for England. He’s a potential choice if he stays on.
But nobody will really argue if McGregor gets the nod when Broony hangs up his boots. The captain’s current form, however, means that won’t be for a while yet.