SPFL side could use strong working Celtic relationship to boost promotion push

By Lewis Laird

June 24, 2022

Scottish League One side Airdrieonians could look to use the working relationship with Celtic to boost their promotion push.

The Diamonds are coming off the back of a strong campaign, having just missed out on promotion to the Championship in the play-off final against Queens Park.

Three young Celts played their part in Airdrie’s 2nd placed finish last season, with Kerr McInroy, Brody Paterson and Jonathan Afolabi spending time on loan there.

Photo By Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile via Getty Images

Alongside the three youngsters going on loan to the Penny Cars Stadium, the Hoops B and Women’s side regularly used Airdrie’s ground as a home venue during the 2021/22 campaign.

As the new season approaches, the League One side will be under new management, with Rhys McCabe taking the reins at Airdrie and Callum Fordyce becoming his number two.

In a recent interview, Fordyce opened up on the relationship between his current side and Celtic and admitted that he will be looking to use the loan market again to aid their promotion push from the third tier.

Whilst the former Airdrie captain didn’t name any clubs in particular, we will likely see another Celtic youngster spend the campaign there, given the dealings between the two sides last season.

He said [Daily Record]: “We have a good relationship with Celtic, with us sharing the pitch last season, and there were some successful loans.

“Kerr (McInroy) came in, Brody (Paterson) and Jonathan (Afolabi) – though Jon didn’t get much of a crack at it because we were very strong in the forward areas and producing goals.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

“But when Jonathan played, he did really well. The three that came from Celtic did really well; we had a good relationship.”

He continued: “It’s a good loan market out there, especially youngsters, and you see how successful they can be, not just at us, but other teams.

“It’s always a market that ourselves and other clubs will be looking at because there are wee gems out there.”

Loan market a good opportunity for Celtic youngsters to gain valuable experience.

The loan market provides young players at the club with an excellent opportunity to gain first-team experience.

We have seen previous examples, such as Callum McGregor and Kristoffer Ajer, go out and learn their trade before coming back and impacting the first team.

The current crop of youngsters at the club will now be looking to do the same this season, attempting to show their worth to Ange Postecoglou.

Photo by Chris Brunskill/Getty Images

Of course, the Celtic manager will want to assess some of these players in pre-season.

However, it wouldn’t come as much of a surprise to see a few quickly put out on loan this campaign and clubs such as Airdrie will be waiting in the wings to provide them with first-team minutes.

In other news, Massimo Donati reflects upon the ‘indescribable’ emotions of playing for Celtic.