WITH ‘new’ manager Brendan Rodgers continuing his plans for the coming 2023/23 Scottish Premiership campaign following his return to Parkhead, it is now being reported that defender Alistair Johnston is likely to miss the first two months of the new domestic campaign having undergone surgery on his ankle.
The 24 year old Canadian international initially sustained the injury back in the Scottish Cup semi final tie with Rangers back on April 30, but he did return against Inverness Caley Thistle for our Scottish Cup final win – however, the issue clearly had not fully resolved itself and over the summer he did not feature in any of Canada’s matches at the Gold Cup, and instead spent time with the physios and doctors, who ultimately decided that surgery would be needed to correct the problem.
For those who like to bet on Celtic FC matches, it is very unlikely that this will change the odds on our success in the fixture list.
Speaking about that surgery, our gaffer recently explained that it had been a full success but it would inevitably leave the player with some down time.
“In the operation, he had a couple of bits removed, which was successful. It’s probably a six to eight-week injury, but hopefully he’ll be fit sooner than that. He’ll progress really well and better to have it done at this stage than some time during the season.”
United States international centre-back Cameron Carter-Vickers missed the run-in to the previous season. The individual rehabilitation programmes for the defenders are obviously different, but both are making progress.
As for CCV, the 25 year old underwent a knee operation back in April and the initial recovery time frame had him out of contention until at least the end of August, however, during Rodgers’ meet with the press he confirmed he was ahead of schedule and could well, in fact, be ready for a return when we open the domestic campaign on home soil against Ross County.
“Cameron is doing very well, he’s out on the pitch. He looks strong and he’s well on schedule to be back, so that’s good news.”
Whilst the Cameron Carter-Vickers news is certainly positive and slightly unexpected, that unfortunately does not apply for winger Mikey Johnston. Having spent the 2022/23 campaign out with Portuguese side Guimaraes to gain extra first team experience, the player is now expected to be sidelined for the next three months owing to a back complaint that he has developed.
New arrival and fresh face, Marco Tilio, will also not be ready for the start of our Premiership campaign as the Australian forward continues to recover from an injury he sustained before we picked him up from Melbourne City.