James Forrest ready to start for Celtic as John Kennedy admits Scott Brown departure 'yet to sink in'

James Forrest will be ready to start Celtic’s Scottish Cup tie against Falkirk on Saturday.

James Forrest featured as a substitute against Rangers on March 21. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)
James Forrest featured as a substitute against Rangers on March 21. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)

The winger has made two substitute appearances since returning from an ankle injury that kept him out for six months.

But Celtic interim manager John Kennedy has confirmed the 29-year-old is now primed for a return to the starting 11.

"James is good to go,” Kennedy said. “He came on against Dundee United and Rangers and has had enough training time so he's in contention to start.

"We want to go out with a strong team to win the game. It’s an important competition for us."

Kennedy also reacted to the news that long-serving captain Scott Brown is to depart the club after 14 years.

Brown has signed a pre-contract agreement with Aberdeen that will see him team up with new Dons manager Stephen Glass in a coaching role next season.

"It’s not quite sunk in yet because he’s still here and he’s an important figure and will be between now and the end of the season,” he said. “It’s been work as normal and Scott’s not the type to let this affect him and those around him.

"We would have loved to have kept him at the club but he’s seen a new challenge that he wants to take on and we’ve got to respect that."

Kennedy confirmed that Celtic have returned a “clean bill of health” from international games, adding: "It’s always difficult when the international break comes around, interrupts you a bit. Some guys got games, some more than we wanted but it is what it is and we move on from now.”

A message from the Editor:

Get a year of unlimited access to all The Scotsman's sport coverage without the need for a full subscription. Expert analysis of the biggest games, exclusive interviews, live blogs, transfer news and 70 per cent fewer ads on Scotsman.com - all for less than £1 a week. Subscribe to us today