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  • Johnston: I'm delighted to be back and I'm ready to play my part

    Johnston: I'm delighted to be back and I'm ready to play my part

    By: Paul Cuddihy on 03 Dec, 2019 15:08

  • MIKEY Johnston couldn’t have asked for a better return to action than the impact he’s made in Celtic’s two most recent games.

    Against Rennes last week in the Europa League, the 20-year-old came off the bench with just over 20 minutes of the match remaining, and within seven minutes, he had combined well with Olivier Ntcham on the edge of the box before firing in Celtic’s third of the night.

    And on Sunday against Ross County, his contribution was even more immediate. Within 60 seconds of replacing Tom Rogic, he had latched on to a superb pass down the left flank from Greg Taylor and then weaved his way into the area before dispatching the ball into the back of the net.

    For a player who has endured a frustrating time this season through injury following a very impressive start to the campaign, it was a great way to announce his return to action.

    Speaking ahead of Wednesday night’s home game against Hamilton Accies, Johnston said: “I’ve enjoyed every minute of being back.

    “It was tough being out injured. It’s part of football, though, and something everyone has to go through at one point. You have to keep your head down, keep your mentality strong and come back.

    “I’m just trying to work hard and get my fitness up and any minute I get is a bonus. There are huge games coming up. The manager’s spoken to me, saying I need to work hard and try and work my way back, and hopefully if I can get back in then I can stay there.”

    Johnston’s return to action last Thursday was the first time he’d featured since the 2-0 win over Rangers at Ibrox back at the start of September, and he’s keen to get back on track with more game-time, and more goals if possible.

    “I know what my role is as a player,” he said. “I need to contribute goals and assists and do my defensive duties to help the team as well.

    “We’ve got loads of good wingers at the club that I can learn from, and if I can take little bit of their game and add it in to mine, then great.”

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