ALISTAIR JOHNSTON has warned Hearts defenders they could face “a nightmare” when they take on Celtic at Parkhead tomorrow night.

The Canada World Cup right-back is settling in nicely at Parkhead following his £3.5million arrival from MLS club CF Montreal in January and won his first honour after only 10 first-team appearances in the holders’ 2-1 victory over Rangers in the Viaplay League Cup Final nine days ago.

Johnston also claimed his first goal for the Hoops in the 5-1 triumph over St Mirren in Paisley on Sunday as the champions restored their nine-point advantage over Michael Beale’s side who travel to Easter Road for an intriguing clash with Hibs tomorrow evening.

CRUNCH…Alistair Johnston and Thierry Small clash as they battle for possession in Celtic’s 5-1 win over St Mirren.

The 24-year-old international defender is looking forward to his first-ever meeting with the Tynecastle outfit – already beaten twice by Ange Postecoglou’s men this term, 2-0 in Glasgow and 4-3 in Edinburgh – and expects to see the Hoops wide Bhoys terrorise their visitors.

Johnston was impressed by the form of Liel Abada after the Israeli flanker was introduced to the action in Paisley at the start of the second-half and said: “He’s so dynamic and that goes to show for all our wingers.

“They all pose a slightly different threat, they’re so talented and they are a nightmare.

“I know as a full-back when you go up against someone for 60 minutes and they run you ragged and then all of a sudden a new fresh player comes on with a new threat it’s always a nightmare.”

Robbie Neilson’s team will provide the opposition tomorrow in the league and then again in the Scottish Cup quarter-final on Saturday and Johnston, speaking to Celtic TV, added: “We know the most important thing is getting the results.

“As long as we’re keeping clean sheets and progressing, then I’m happy and it’s a good start to a big week.”


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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