CAMERON CARTER-VICKERS prepared for Celtic’s visit to Tynecastle on Sunday with an 18-minute work-out as the USA eased to a 4-0 win over Ghana in Nashville today.

The Hoops centre-back made his first Premiership start in the 3-1 success over Kilmarnock at Parkhead 11 days ago after being sidelined with a muscular injury sustained in the second league game of the season against Aberdeen at Pittodrie on August 15.

Carter-Vickers was forced to miss seven consecutive matches before making a surprise 62nd-minute appearance in the agonising 2-1 Champions League stoppage-time loss to Lazio in Glasgow.

WELCOME BACK…Cameron Carter-Vickers receives a kick on the head from a Lazio player during his return in the Champions League match at Parkhead.

However, the £6million buy from Spurs came through unscathed against the Italians and kept his place against the Ayrshire club and is now set to line up alongside Liam Scales, who made his Republic of Ireland senior debut last week, against Hearts in Edinburgh.

Carter-Vickers, who also played for 25 minutes in his adopted nation’s 3-1 defeat against Germany in Connecticut at the weekend, was quizzed by the media in The States about his current situation at the champions where he is under contract until 2026.

Asked about the chances of a return to football across the border, the 25-year-old rock-solid defender answered: “If it comes, great, but if it doesn’t I’m happy where I’m at now.

“It’s a club where there’s always pressure on you which I think someone like me almost needs that to remain focused and keep me playing at my highest level week-in and week out.

“As a player sometimes, when you’re playing week-in and week out, you kind of get into a rhythm of turning up.

HEADS I WIN…Cameron Carter-Vickers leaps to nod in Celtic’s final goal against Hearts in the 3-0 Scottish Cup quarter-final win at Tynecastle in March. The centre-back will be looking for an action replay at the venue on Sunday. 

The pivot, speaking to The Sporting News, added: “I don’t think the Celtic fans allow that.

“A draw in the league is a disaster for the fans. Once you realise that, you know every game you have to be going 100 per cent to win the game.”

The return of Carter-Vickers to full fitness is a massive boost for Brendan Rodgers who is likely to be without Maik Nawrocki, the club’s £4.3million buy from Legia Warsaw in summer, and former Scotland Under-21 captain Stephen Welsh for the remainder of the year.

After the challenge of the Gorgie side in the capital on Sunday, the Hoops face a must-win confrontation with Atletico Madrid at Parkhead a week tonight.

Rodgers’ side are bottom of Group E after losses against Feyenoord and the Serie A crack and need to get on the board against the talented Spaniards.

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