CALLUM McGREGOR insists Celtic’s warm-weather training camp in Dubai will help the team hit the reset button as they prepare for an almighty assault on the remainder of the season.
In the midst of the Scottish Government’s furore over the timing of the break, the Hoops’ international midfielder concentrated on the benefits that can be gained from five days of concentrated training in sunshine.
McGregor stressed the importance the set-up has played in the club’s success over the past four seasons and, speaking to the Daily Mail, said: “The camp lets us come away into the warm climate and have intense training.
“That’s the main benefit of the fitness work – it’s something you can’t replicate at home in the cold weather.
“The added benefit of the heat improves your fitness when you’re working at that intensity. It gives you a different level of fitness when you go back and it’s pretty much impossible to recreate that back in the colder climate.
GOBSMACKED…Callum McGregor after his Ibrox own goal.
“The objective of the camp is to work as hard as we possibly can and take that into the next stretch of the season. It’s slightly different circumstances this time, but the trip and its purpose is exactly the same: we come here, we train exceptionally hard, we hit the reset button and then we go again.
“The trip has been the same for the last few years, as have the benefits of that in terms of fitness work, keeping everyone at their sharpest and getting the boys who’ve maybe not played as much football up to speed.”
Celtic dropped only two points – in a 2-2 draw with Livingston in West Lothian in March – in league games after returning from Dubai last season as they stormed to their ninth consecutive championship.
Something similar is required if there is to be any hope of a tenth.
The Hoops return on Friday and will resume the Premiership campaign with a rescheduled game against Hibs at Parkhead on Monday evening.