International duty ends for Celtic players with only one big concern for Ange

By David Walton

June 15, 2022

All 13 Celtic first-team players on international duty have finally rounded off their spells with their national teams as they prepare for their pre-season returns.

It’s been a mixed bag as you would expect in terms of results for so many of our top talents. The likes of Callum McGregor and Anthony Ralston will have been left hugely disappointed at Scotland’s failure to reach the World Cup in Qatar. Liel Abada and Josip Juranovic, meanwhile, will be delighted to have made such a big impact in the Nations League.

Indeed, there’s been plenty to write and discuss during the internationals. But thankfully, they’ve come to an end as a craving for club football returns to supporters’ appetites.

Photo by JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images

However, one of the biggest fears when it came to the internationals was that Celtic would pink up some pre-season blows. That some of our top stars may not be able to go again on their return date due to injury problems.

Thankfully, it appears we’ve come out of things relatively well. 12 of our 13 players involved on the international stage don’t seem to have picked up any knocks, with the only blow for Ange being the early injury to Carl Starfelt.

The Swede started his first professional game for his country in Slovenia just under 2 weeks ago as he looked set for a spell in the team under Janne Andersson. However, he pulled up with a suspected hamstring early in the first half and subsequently had to drop out of the squad.

Carl Starfelt represents only Celtic concern from international duty

It remains to be seen how long Carl is out for. Celtic supporters will be desperate for him to be fit and ready to go for pre-season. As of yet, there’s been no update on his apparent condition.

However, it also could’ve gone a lot worse with so many other Celtic stars competing in a hectic schedule over the last 2 weeks.

Of course, there could’ve been knocks picked up from the final rounds of fixtures which have yet to be revealed. That’s unlikely to be the case however and even if there were any bumps or bruises, there’s next to no chance it would keep them out as far as the end of July.

Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

For that’s when the big kick-off gets underway in Scotland as the Premiership start-date already closes in. Given it’s a World Cup year, expect plenty of our top stars to return to Lennoxtown with an added spring in their step.

It’s going to be another big year for the club as we look to re-establish ourselves as a UEFA Champions League club once more. We’re going to need everyone giving 100% and being fit and available for that to be the case.

And as pre-season nears, it looks as though Ange doesn’t have too many issues to deal with injury-wise.

In other news, Report: No bids for Celtic-linked Mohammed Abu Fani as he returns for pre-season