The fu­ture looks bright for McCart, says Fo­ran


RICHIE FO­RAN be­lieves Jamie McCart’s el­e­va­tion into the Scot­land Un­der-21 squad is a marker of his emer­gence as one of the coun­try’s bright­est prospects.

The on-loan Celtic cen­tral de­fender has suc­cess­fully made the leap from de­vel­op­ment league foot­ball to full Scot­tish Pre­mier­ship ac­tion with In­ver­ness Ca­ley This­tle.

The 19-year-old, son of Celtic’s head of youth Chris McCart, stepped into the breach with the High­landers amid a de­fen­sive in­jury cri­sis and helped shore up one of the leaki­est de­fences in the league.

With McCart yet to taste de­feat in five first team out­ings for In­ver­ness – in­clud­ing four draws and a vic­tory over Rangers – Fo­ran sees in­volve­ment the Scot­land set-up as a nat­u­ral and de­served pro­gres­sion.

Ahead of last night’s Un­der-21 clash with Es­to­nia, the Ir­ish­man said: “It’s great to see Jamie get­ting his first call-up. It’s a mark of the great prom­ise and po­ten­tial he is show­ing.

“He’s gone from play­ing youth foot­ball to be­ing a reg­u­lar starter here in the Scot­tish Pre­mier­ship.

“That amounts to a big jump in the stan­dard of foot­ball he’s been play­ing, but he has adapted su­perbly. Now he’s got his in­ter­na­tional call-up and it’s well de­served.

“I’m de­lighted for him. He’s a very mod­est kid who works very hard and al­ways does that lit­tle bit ex­tra af­ter train­ing.

“He’s been a great ad­di­tion to the squad and we’re re­ally pleased for him.”

Fo­ran, mean­while, con­firmed that cen­tral de­fender Josh Meek­ings is un­likely to play again this sea­son due to a knee in­jury.

Ca­ley This­tle face los­ing the for­mer Ip­swich Town youth un­der free­dom of con­tract in June.

But Fo­ran stressed Meek­ings would be wrapped in cot­ton wool and given care­ful as­sis­tance in his re­cov­ery de­spite the very prospect of los­ing the 24-year-old this sum­mer af­ter six years at the club.

RIS­ING STAR: Jamie McCart (right)

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