CROCKED Celtic winger James Forrest has suffered a setback in his battle to overcome an ankle injury.

The Scotland international star, who has been out since September, had hoped to make his return at the turn of the year with the game at Ibrox on January 2 a possible target.

Forrest underwent surgery on a troublesome stress fracture early last month and was expected to be nearing the end of his rehab with the Glasgow derby edging closer. But there is NO chance of a comeback performance against Steven Gerrard’s side.

Boss Neil Lennon, speaking to the Scottish Sun on Sunday, said: “He is coming off the crutches this weekend, which is a step in the right direction.

“We’re probably looking at the end of January. By then, we will have an idea of where he is.”

Lennon also revealed long-term absentee Mikey Johnston is training with the first-team squad again after an appearance for the youth side last week.

The tricky touchline ace has been out since January following operations on both calves to repair ligament damage.

The Hoops boss added: “Mikey is back in training. He will play 45 minutes for the development team on Monday, so we are assessing him.”

* DON’T miss the unbeatable match report from Celtic v Kilmarnock – only in your champion CQN.

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