McLeish has to build team around his

Evening Times - - SPORT -

ALL of the talk prior to the Celtic game against RB Leipzig on Thurs­day night cen­tred around the mul­ti­mil­lion-pound disco lights, but what truly left the pun­ters daz­zled was the dis­plays of the Scots in the Hoops who were as­sem­bled for around the price of a de­cent halo­gen bulb.

The Scot­tish core to the Celtic team has been a hall­mark of their side since Bren­dan Rodgers took charge, but Thurs­day evening truly felt like a com­ing of age for their lo­cal lads as they seized con­trol of a match and took it away from a top-level Eu­ro­pean out­fit.

Kieran Tier­ney, James For­rest and Cal­lum Mc­Gre­gor – the home­grown con­tin­gent – were out­stand­ing. And Ryan Christie, brought down the road from In­ver­ness for a lit­tle over £500,000 in 2015, an­nounced his ar­rival as a se­ri­ous Celtic player.

The road to the Park­head first team has been a long and wind­ing one for the 23-yearold, but with this show­ing and his re­cent form since steal­ing the show at Mur­ray­field against Hearts in the Bet­fred Cup semi-fi­nal, it feels as if – three years af­ter sign­ing – he has fi­nally ar­rived at the club.

There is lit­tle that can be said of Tier­ney that hasn’t been said be­fore or doesn’t come across as yet an­other gush­ing ap­praisal of his tal­ents. But what else can you say when faced with the ev­i­dence of his per­for­mance against Leipzig?

The 21-year-old (yep, that’s right, he’s 21) ex­hib­ited all of his pace, power, strength and at­tack­ing threat in a dis­play that left his im­me­di­ate op­po­nent look­ing as if

he

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