CELTIC’S recent matches on artificial surfaces at Kilmarnock and Astana will be of considerable benefit to Gordon Strachan’s Scotland side as they prepare for their first ever match on the plastic surface in next Friday’s win or bust World Cup qualifier in Lithuania.

Yet the Celtic slipper Scott Brown, who is likely to captain his country in the World Cup double header, reckons that these pitches are dangerous and are a regrettable addition to the game, particularly in the domestic game in Scotland.

Brown was asked f he was looking forward to playing on the astroturf at the LFF Stadionas in Vilnius on Friday and he used this as an opportunity to condemn these pitches.

“No. Folk are probably playing five-a-sides on it now,” Brown said.

“You get a lot of injuries but it’s in the Scottish game now.

“We’ll deal with what we have to deal with, but we sadly have to play on two astroturf grounds here and then go over to Lithuania.

“It will be four in a couple of weeks, it’s not great for your body but you have to deal with it.

“Lithuania will be used to it more than us but it helps that Celtic have had games on astro recently.


“Astro affects everyone. It’s different for me compared to maybe other players.

“It’s another Scotland game for me, hopefully we can win to do the country proud.”

Celtic won 2-0 on Kilmarnock’s Rugby Park plastic pitch with many Celtic supporters commenting that although the points were picked up, the quality of the match was poor on the plastic. Indeed if it is used as an economic argument then Kilmarnock will be looking at the decline in their crowds with both Celtic stands sold out and a little over a thousand in the home support with many thousands of empty seats.

Celtic picked up an injury to Nir Bitton, a second half substitute at Rugby Park, and this almost cost him a place in the Celtic side that travelled to Astana where the Scottish Champions lost 4-3 on the plastic. And after the international break Celtic are back on the plastic when they travel to Hamilton on September 9.

Scots boss Gordon Strachan has prepared on Morton’s artificial pitches at Port Glasgow this week.



CQN’s latest Podcast is now available for you to enjoy.

Paul John Dykes recorded Episode 10 of ‘A Celtic State of Mind’ at Andrew Milne’s first ‘Celtic AM’ event of the 2017-18 season.

A Celtic State of Mind offers an insight into the culture of Celtic Football Club, the city of Glasgow, and fans of the reigning invincible Scottish champions.

Each episode includes interviews with ‘Celtic-minded’ figures from the world of sport, music, film, art, broadcasting, literature or politics, and this week’s guests include:

* Aidso Digney from the Éire Go Brách CSC, who discusses his late friend, Kidso Reilly;
* Professional boxer, Gary Murray;
* Centenary hero, Joe Miller;
* Music from Keith Murray.


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