Celtic manager Neil Lennon could reportedly hand Scott Robertson a start on his debut in Cluj tonight.
According to the Scottish Sun, the Hoops academy product “is in with a real chance” of starting tonight, with Scott Brown out through suspension.
Lennon is also without both Tom Rogic and Ryan Christie who have stayed in Scotland. That means that the likes of Callum McGregor or Olivier Ntcham could have to play in an advanced position. That would leave an opening there for Robertson to take tonight in what could be a huge night for the youngster.
The Hoops boss confirmed last night that Robertson, Karamoko Dembele, and Grant Savoury had all managed to make the squad for tonight (Celtic Twitter). Only Dembele has made his debut out of the three players. However, both he and Savoury are expected to start on the bench.
Robertson did appear in a couple of pre-season friendlies against Pinkafeld and Rennes. In recent weeks, he’s managed to win himself a place on the bench against the French side and Ross County too.
A tremendous experience and a shrewd move by Neil Lennon
This is a great move by the manager. What an opportunity it could be for some of these youngsters to make a serious impression in a Celtic jersey.
It’s worth remembering that we only managed a 1-1 draw in Cluj with our top-team during the Champions League qualifiers. Therefore, if the likes of Robertson can step in and do a job tonight, it reads extremely well for him.
The midfielder is also tied down at Parkhead until the summer of 2021 (Celtic Twitter). It would be an ideal time for him to start showing what he’s made of.
For youngsters like Robertson, these kinds of opportunities are golden. With the tightness of the title-race this season, it’s not inconceivable to think that it could go down to the last couple of games. Therefore, we wouldn’t have the luxury as we have had in recent years of giving youngsters minutes at the end of the season.
Cluj gives us that unique opportunity. With regards to qualification, we can’t be harmed. It’ll therefore be interesting to see just how many minutes Lenny gives all three of the youngsters.
What it has done is inject a bit more excitement into tonight’s match. It provides supporters with that intrigue factor that you could argue was missing beforehand.
Here’s hoping all three of the young Bhoys take their chance, regardless of who starts and who comes on.