SCOTT Allan has admitted that the transformation from Rangers supporter to Celtic player has “not been as bad” as he feared as he reflected on the first few weeks of his new life at Parkhead.
The midfielder joined Celtic from Hibernian last month after a transfer saga that had looked likely to end with the player signing for Rangers, his boyhood heroes. Celtic manager Ronny Deila entered the race late in the day after the Ibrox club had made three bids for Allan, all of which were turned down by Hibs. Allan even submitted a transfer request in the hope of facilitating a move to Rangers.
But Hibs stressed they were not interested in selling the talented midfielder to one of their direct rivals for promotion from the Championship. Celtic stepped into the fray in the middle of last month and Allan jumped at the chance to join the champions and play European football this season.
Explaining that others have crossed the great divide in the past, Allan, who started his career at Dundee United, said at the time he did not anticipate there being too much aggravation. He dismissed those in his circle who had a problem with his move as not being friends in any case. Yesterday he claimed the settling-in period has been even smoother than he was expecting.
“My friends and family have been really supportive,” he said. “To be honest, it has not been as bad as I thought it might be. There has been quite a lot of banter to be fair. It has not been too bad as I thought it might be.
“There have been a couple of things said but nothing too bad, there hasn’t been any malice.
“There has been a lot of humour, with friends of friends and all that but I knew it was coming so it has not affected me at all to be honest. I have just kept my head down and not put myself in too many situations.”
Allan has, he admitted, been slightly wary when he has been carrying out everyday chores, such as shopping in a supermarket. “You never know who is there,” he said. “But you can’t live your life feeling that way. Obviously I am from Glasgow and I know a lot of people around so I am not expecting any trouble.”
Allan has, however, kept in place a ban on himself using Twitter – for the time being at least. “I use Instagram but I’ve not used Twitter since I’ve been here,” he said. “It’s not worth the hassle of being on there and reading the abuse, so you might as well avoid it.”
Allan, who has made two appearances as substitute to date for Celtic, is hoping to be involved in the eagerly awaited clash with Aberdeen at Pittodrie on Saturday. “I knew I’d have to be patient and that’s what I said when I first signed,” he said. “Then when I get a chance I have to grab it with both hands.”