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HOOPS KEEPER PLAYS IT COOL

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SCOTT BAIN is playing it cool as he prepares for a battle for the gloves in the new season.

The 28-year-old Scotland international is the only experienced goalkeeper on Celtic’s books at the moment as Neil Lennon prepares his squad for a bid at making history with their tenth successive title.

Bain, with youngsters Conor Hazard and Ross Doohan as back up, is the main man while the Fraser Forster situation remains in the balance and Craig Gordon gets ready for his second stint at Hearts after agreeing a two-year deal with the Edinburgh outfit last month.

The former Dundee shotstopper, who is under contract until 2023, has been impressed by the training facilities at Loughborough as the players step up their preparations for the forthcoming campaign. And he admitted he is happy the heat is off.

GLOVE AFFAIR…Scott Bain prepares for kick-off in the Scottish Cup-tie against Clyde in February.

Bain, speaking to the club website, said: “It’s been good so far. It’s a great facility here. It’s very professional, the pitches are immaculate and the gym is exactly what we need, so it’s a good trip for the boys.

“It’s always good for the brain to get a change of scenery, it freshens up the mind. It lets the boys get together and spend quality-time together for some team bonding before the season starts.

“The coronavirus means we’re all in our own rooms rather than sharing like we’d usually do during pre-season. I normally share with Nir Bitton and it’s always good fun. It’s good to have someone on the same page as you because you don’t want to share with a team-mate who stays up late when you like an early night!

“Training in the rain in the UK takes away that additional challenge of the heat. We’d obviously like it to be a little bit drier and sunnier, though.

“We’re not losing out by training in a cooler environment. Compared to the heat abroad, it’s maybe a little easier for the boys to get through the double sessions, but the sessions are a little longer because there isn’t that intense heat playing a role in fatigue.”

The champions are now getting ready for their three-game trip to France where they will play Lyon, Nice and Paris Saint-Germain behind closed doors.

 
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