RYAN CHRISTIE is aiming to become the Cup conqueror of Aberdeen for the second time this season.
The stylish Celtic midfielder has been sidelined since sustaining an injury against Motherwell in the 4-1 win at Parkhead on February 24 – Brendan Rodgers’ last match in charge of the Hoops before his sudden defection to mid-table Leicester City.
Christie, who scored the Betfred League Cup winner against the Dons at the start of December, has the Pittodrie club, where he spent 18 months on loan, in his sights again as he attempts to get back to full fitness.
The 24-year-old Scotland international midfielder has missed the last four games against Hearts, Hibs, Aberdeen and Dundee, has no chance of a sensational return against Steven Gerrard’s Ibrox side on Sunday when the champions can ease 13 points clear in the quest for their eighth successive crown.
HAMPDEN WINNER…Ryan Christie fires in the only goal of the Betfred League Cup success over Aberdeen.
A more likely target date is the Scottish Cup semi-final against Derek McInnes’ men at Hampden on April 14 where Neil Lennon has the opportunity of leading the team 90 minutes closer to an unprcedented treble treble.
Christie is eager to play his part in making history and, speaking to Celtic TV, admitted: “Obviously, it’s always frustrating getting injured.
“When you finally overcome the first part and manage to get yourself back out and start running again, it’s always nice.
“Hopefully, I can start trying to get back into a rhythm again and, hopefully, join training in the next couple of weeks and then really kick on.”
Talking of the changeover of managers, Christie added: “Neil’s been brilliant. I think all the boys have agreed with that since he’s come in. He’s just been brilliant for me so far.
“As soon as he came in the door within a couple of days, he pulled me aside just to have a chat with me and get to know me a bit and likewise me with him.
“So, that was nice and now I’m desperate to get my first taste of playing under him.”
On a brighter note on the injury front, Lennon is hoping to have Kieran Tierney ready to go, despite the left-back returning home early from the Scotland Euro 2020 squad that played Kazakhstan and San Marino.
Olivier Ntcham, who hasn’t made a first team appearance in 2019, is also back in training and could be considered.
The French powerhouse scored the only goal of the Glasgow derby fixture in September.