With all the focus on Patrick Roberts and Kieran Tierney it’s often forgotten that there’s a bigger more enduring bromance in the Celtic squad and like Tierney/Roberts friendship it could be tested by long distance.
I’m talking of course about Stuart Armstrong and Gary McKay Steven.
The Celtic midfield duo who were signed by Celtic at the same time have spent a lot of their professional career together but now Armstrong is flying high in a relentless Celtic side while GMS toils and struggles to break into the squad with the amount of talent in his position. There is real talk of the winger being moved on in the summer as Rodgers shows no mercy in his pursuit of the perfect side.
When it became public knowledge that both were on their way to Celtic Park there was more excitement around GMS than there was around Armstrong at the time. Mackay Steven put in some top performances for the Tannadice side and the Celtic faithful were delighted at the thought of the player doing the same at Parkhead. His performances and starts have been in fits and bursts. Whether it be injury that’s hampered him or a lack of consistency he’s clearly down the pecking order under Rodgers. Put that together with Rodgers desire to cut the squad size down and you fear the worst for the playmaker.
On the other hand you have Stuart Armstrong, who has been a revelation under the new managers. Playing to a high level, alongside a rejuvenated Scott Brown and even chipping in with his fair share of goals. All of which has culminated in his call up to the Scotland team. Stuart has played for his country at under 21 level but has been handed his full international call up by former Celtic manager Gordon Strachan. The player is on the up and he’s made himself a massive part of Brendan Rodgers plans when earlier in the season he looked like he might be another player to make way in the Rodgers revolution.
Gary Mackay Steven will have his fans and detractors and both can provide a decent amount of evidence to prove their stance but the only stance that matters is the Celtic managers.
The Armstrong/Mackay connection could be cut this summer, professionally anyway. Or can the player use the last nine games to fight for his place in the squad.