AIDEN McGeady looks certain to make a return to the east end of Glasgow this week against Celtic after completing his first game for six weeks.
Spartak Moscow’s former Parkhead winger has been out since October with a foot injury, picked up while playing for Ireland against the Faroe Isles.
But he made his return in yet another dismal outing for crisis club Spartak in a 4-2 home defeat to Zenit St Petersburg.
And he looks certain to play in Celtic’s do-or-die Champions League clash with the Russians in Glasgow.
Spartak fans have already confronted the players last week after a derby defeat to Dynamo Moscow and accused them of intentionally losing the game.
But McGeady has urged the Spartak fans to stick by the team ahead of a return to Scotland.
He said: “I would say to the fans that we need their help more than ever.
“We are doing everything to try and rectify our situation.
“Zenit are a good side who defended well and there was nothing we could do about it, but we are annoyed because we thought we could win the game.
“It’s not easy for the fans right now to support us, but hopefully we can get some results with them, beginning with the Celtic game this week.”
Spartak’s shambolic preparations for the clash with Celtic continued as they had two players sent off in the defeat to Zenit.
Nicolas Pareja and Juan Insaurralde – Spartak’s Argentine duo – were both red carded as Spartak crashed to their third defeat in a row.
Celtic need to better Benfica’s result in Barcelona to qualify to the next stage of the competition.
Unlike Celtic, Benfica have a free weekend to prepare for their match in the Nou Camp. They last played on 24 November when they defeated Olhanense 2-0 at home, four days after they beat Celtic in the Stadium of Light. They remain joint top of the Portuguese league, level on points with Porto but one goal worse off.