Quick links


Bhoys' January signing: Deep down everyone at Celtic would admit this

Celtic attacker Gary Mackay-Steven insists that the Champions League remains the main priority.

Celtic new boy Gary Mackay-Steven has told the Daily Record that qualifying for the Champions League next season will be even more important than winning the domestic treble this term.

Celtic are in with a chance of lifting the Scottish Cup, the Scottish League Cup and the Scottish Premiership, but Mackay-Steven says that the main aim for his side is to qualify for the Champions League.

The former Dundee United attacker insists that everyone comes to the Bhoys to play elite level football and he already has one eye on next summer's qualifiers. 

“Right now, the Treble is the short-term goal," he said. “But looking beyond that, the manager and everyone else is gearing the team towards getting into the Champions League. That is what all of the players would say is their aim deep down. We can achieve that here.

“If we win the league, the qualifiers in the summer will be massive. It might mean a short summer break but, ultimately, that’s what we all want.”

Celtic crashed out of the Champions League qualifiers this season, but they look better placed to make it into the group stages next time around.

Deila's men have improved considerably as they have begun to adapt to his managerial approach and they look a much more threatening team now.

Celtic have developed an attacking style of play, but they also look solid at the back and they will enter the Champions League qualification process much more confident of progress next term.

If Celtic do qualify for Europe's elite competition it will be Mackay-Steven's first taste of Champions League football and that would cap off a remarkable rise for the 24-year-old. 

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch