Celtic manager Neil Lennon has been talking up the ability of Diego Laxalt after he made his debut against Rangers yesterday, The Daily Record reports.
Laxalt was thrown in at the deep end for his first Bhoys appearance, facing our biggest rivals in our biggest match of the season so far.
He didn’t look out of place but, like the rest of the team, didn’t really stand out for me either.
It’s clear he has footballing ability though and, hopefully, with a bit of time he can blossom in an organised tactical set-up.
Lennon is now ready to unleash him against loan club AC Milan on Thursday, suggesting he is now first-choice in the left wing-back position.
As quoted by The Daily Record, he said: “Of course we’ll be leaning on Diego a lot in the coming days before the game but we’re not just talking about this specific game.
“It’s a good career move and important for his development to play regularly and the British culture is a style he wants to adapt to.
“Most importantly he wants to play well for us. He made it clear he wanted to come and play here and he’s fully focused and excited at the season ahead. He knows he’s going to be an integral part of the squad.
“He’s probably been unfortunate not to play more for AC Milan. He had a good spell at Torino last season and has been a brilliant player for his country over the last few years.”
Laxalt now has a massive chance to show his old club that they were wrong to transfer list him and make himself a hero with the Celtic supporters.
Yesterday’s derby defeat has overshadowed Thursday’s night match, but it’s still a huge game.
A good sequence of results in the Europa League could be just what we need to get a bit of confidence flowing in this under-fire Celtic team.
Am I confident of beating Milan? Of course, I am not, but it’s best to look forward with some sort of optimism.
Laxalt’s inside track on his team may help us forge a path to victory.