CELTIC’S evergreen winger James Forrest has been granted a Testimonial Match against La Liga club Athletic Bilbao at Parkhead on Tuesday August 1.

The 31-year-old one-club man has amassed an extraordinary amount of honours since Neil Lennon gave him his debut as a rookie teenager against Motherwell on May 1 2010.

Displaying the signs of things to come, Forrest scored on his first appearance in the 4-0 win over the Fir Parkers.

He notched his century this season with a hat-trick in the 6-1 victory over Hibs at Parkhead in October.

HAMPDEN HERO…James Forrest is congratulated by Kyogo Furuhashi after scoring the winner in the League Cup semi-final triumph over St Johnstone in November 2021.

Forrest has picked up 11 league titles, five Scottish Cups and five League Cups in his glittering career in Paradise.

He made a 25-minute appearance in the 4-2 loss at Easter Road last night and is in Ange Postecoglou’s thoughts as he plans ahead for the Scottish Cup Final against Inverness Caley Thistle at Hampden a week on Saturday.

The Hoops boss, speaking to the club website, said: “James has been a hugely important figure to Celtic across so many years, contributing massively to such a sustained period of success for the club and he is really deserving of this great honour.

“Although he has achieved so much he is someone who remains so humble and unassuming, continuing to quietly get on with his job and striving every day to do all he can to bring more and more success to our supporters.

“I am sure this match will be a great occasion for James and the club. It will be our first match back at Celtic Park after the summer break and we hope as many supporters as possible will be able to attend.

HAIL THE CENTURIAN…James Forrest celebrates his hat-trick against Hibs as he notches up 100 Celtic goals.

“We look forward to welcoming Athletic Club to Glasgow and we are sure they will provide a great test for us, but above all we look forward to a special night, honouring someone who has given us all so much.”

Chief executive Michael Nicholson added: “We were really pleased to grant James this testimonial match, and we wish him and the Committee all the very best for the game, which we are sure will be a wonderful occasion.

“James has committed himself to Celtic and has delivered success after success to our supporters and our club, for which we are all grateful.

“James could not be more deserving of this honour and I am sure the match will be a great celebration of his Celtic career.”

The game also forms part of Athletic Club’s 125th Anniversary celebrations.


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