FANS’ favourite Filipe Jota is facing a race against time to be fit for Celtic’s Premier Sports League Cup Final against Hibs at Hampden a week on Sunday.

Some reports are already ruling the on-loan Benfica winger out of the silverware showpiece, but Ange Postecoglou will give the player every opportunity to perform at the national stadium as he looks to win his first honour as Hoops boss.

However, the Greek-Australian gaffer, who watched his team romp to a stylish 3-0 victory over Dundee United at Tannadice yesterday, did reveal Jota is facing being sidelined for “a few weeks”.

UP IN THE AIR…Filipe Jota faces a race to be fit for Hampden on December 19.

The exciting 22-year-old wide Bhoy has been a sensation since agreeing his season-long move from the Lisbon giants, but there are obvious concerns over the hamstring pull sustained in the 1-0 win over Hearts at Parkhead on Thursday night.

Jota pulled up suddenly in the 71st minute when he was racing with the ball and was immediately replaced by Mikey Johnston taking his place. Anthony Ralston and Stephen Welsh were also forced off against the Tynecastle side as injuries worryingly mounted at the club.

Reviewing the Portuguese ace’s chances of playing a part in the quest for the first domestic trophy of the campaign, Postecoglou, speaking to the Scottish Sun, said: “It’s hard to say.

IN THE PICTURE…Ange Postecoglou hails the Celtic fans at Tannadice.

“We’re saying a few weeks at the moment and he’s obviously keen to come back.

“But out of the three of them, he was the most significant injury.

“It’s a blow because, apart from the team aspect, he was enjoying his football and wanted to kick on.

“He’ll work hard in rehab and we’ll try to get him back as soon as we can.”

Greek striker Giorgos Giakoumakis, bought from Dutch outfit VVV-Venlo for £2.5million in August, is already out with a knee injury.

HEAD BHOY…Greg Taylor flicks on a header against Dundee United with Cameron Carter-Vickers as a support act.

On the plus side, Scotland international left-back Greg Taylor, missing since September 11 with a shoulder problem, made his comeback on Tayside where strikes from Tom Rogic, David Turnbull and Liam Scales, making his Premiership debut as a second-half substitute, gave the visitors the triumph that keeps them four points adrift of the league summit.

Postecoglou will switch his attention from the domestic scene to the final Europa League Group G encounter with Real Betis in Glasgow on Thursday night.

In terms of qualification, the game is meaningless, but the manager views it as another stage to gauge the progress of his team.

The Spaniards prepared for the confrontation with a 1-0 success over Barcelona at the Nou Camp at the weekend.



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