CELTIC new Bhoy James McCarthy has one regret after joining Celtic – his dad missed the chance of seeing his son playing in the green and white hoops.

His father Willie passed away earlier this year after a brave battle against cancer at the age of 69,

McCarthy, who joined the club during the week after leaving Crystal Palace at the end of the season when his contract expired, is determined to make his late dad, a huge Hoops fan, proud.

The Glasgow-born Republic of Ireland midfielder, born and brought up in the sprawling housing estate of Castlemilk, said: “When I was out with a broken leg, it was a tough time for me. But I had my family and a lot of people around me, which helped massively.

“It can be a long road back, but once you start jogging again and doing wee bits, you start to see light at the end of the tunnel. Then it’s about your first tackle, your first kick.

“I always knew I was going to get back and now I feel physically as good as I did before then.”

McCarthy, speaking to Glasgow Live, added: “My dad was an enormous influence on me throughout my career.

“When I was a young kid, he took me back and forth to Hamilton. He’d pick me up, take me here, there and everywhere. Both mum and dad did.

“Losing my dad a few months ago means it’s been a tough time for the family, but I’m delighted to be back home now, seeing them a lot more.

“I know how much this would have meant to him. I’m coming to Celtic to make him and my family proud.”

However, McCarthy, who has had only one squad training session at Lennoxtown, will have to wait for his Hoops debut after Postecoglou left him out of his squad for today’s visit of Dundee when 24,500 will be allowed into Parkhead, as CQN reported earlier today.

The player has been training on his own since the end of his terms at the Selhurst Park and the manager has decided to leave him out while he works on his fitness.

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


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