CELTIC and Scotland keeper Scott Bain believes Premiership bosses could have done more with their fixture list to keep players fresh for club and country.

The Hoops shotstopper and his team-mates will bring down the curtain in the Scottish Cup Final against Hearts a week today.

And then Bain will have to focus on his nation’s Euro 2020 qualifying double-header against Cyprus at Hampden on June 8 and Belgium in Brussels three days later.

The former Dundee No.1 is expected to play his 24th successive game for the champions when they face Craig Levein’s Tynecastle outfit in the last day of the Premiership campaign tomorrow when the club will be presented with their eighth successive crown.

Bain has been impressive since taking over from Craig Gordon at the turn of the year and is expected to be in place for the Euro ties with Kilmarnock boss Steve Clarke expected to be named new international manager next week, as Scotzine reported.

The Hoops squad, which includes several Scotland internationals, will report back at Parkhead before they fly out to Austria on June 24 for a training camp in preparation for their opening Champions League qualifier on July 9/10.

Bain, speaking to Sky Sports, said: “They changed the split so that every game is on a Saturday.

HE FLIES THROUGH THE AIR…Scott Bain makes a brilliant save against Kazakhstan.

“I think they could have potentially done a Wednesday-Saturday, Wednesday-Saturday until the end of the season and then had the Cup Final.

“That would have given the Scottish boys an extra week to 10 days to get away and have a break and feel refreshed for meeting up with Scotland again, especially for our boys, we are in early as are the other teams who are in Europe.

“I don’t think enough has been thought of about breaks for the players and how detrimental and how hard it is for the players to not get away for a break.

“More has to be done to think about what can we do to give the players a little more time in the summer, so that each team stands a better chance to get through these qualifiers because these are tough games.

“A lot of times you are playing against teams who have either started their league or had a good break and had a pre-season. We don’t get a time to recharge.

“I will try and get a week in the sun before and a week or 10 days after the Scotland trip and coming in for pre-season. So, not much time for a break.”


About Author


Acclaimed author Alex Gordon wrote the biography of Scotland international legend Denis Law, entitled 'King and Country'. He is a former columnist with World Soccer magazine and Scottish correspondent of respected European journal L'Equipe.

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