Nir Bitton confirms his dedication to Celtic by outlining his willingness to play against Astana

Celtic's Nir Bitton (R) celebrates scoring their first goal

The midfielder is a major doubt for the Scottish Premiership side's Champions League clash.

Celtic's Nir Bitton (2L) in action with St Johnstone's Simon Lappin (L) and David Wotherspoon (R)Celtic's Nir Bitton

Nir Bitton has arguably proven his dedication to Celtic by insisting that he would be willing to play against Astana even if he was not fully fit, The Scottish Sun reports.

The Israeli midfielder - who recently told The Scottish Sun that he had no intention of leaving Parkhead despite speculation linking him with a move to either the Premier League or La Liga - is a doubt for the second-leg of their Champions League third qualifying round tie after picking up an ankle injury in the International Champions Cup clash with Barcelona.

Celtic's Nir Bitton (R) celebrates scoring their first goal

But despite the knock, Bitton has told Hoops boss Brendan Rodgers that he is ready to play if required, even if he is not back to full health.

"If it was my decision then I would play. But it's not my decision," he told The Scottish Sun.

The 24-year-old sustained the injury within the first minute of the game against the Catalan giants following a collision with Arda Turan.

Celtic manager Brendan RodgersCeltic manager Brendan Rodgers

Nevertheless, despite limping for some time after the challenge, he managed to continue playing until half-time. And he explained that while he knew almost immediately that things were not quite right, he felt a determination to continue.

"The first ten seconds after it happened I felt I couldn't stay on. But then, when your body's warm, and with the adrenaline, it's a big game and you what to play, I carried on," he added.

"Maybe I should have gone off, but I didn't want to. It's too early to say now about my ankle. We will see on Monday. I don't know just now, but I will probably have a scan on it."

Ross County's Ian McShane (R) in action with Celtic's Nir Bitton

Although Rodgers will not be entirely happy following Bitton's comments - considering that coming off earlier against Barca may have possibly improved his chances of being fit to face Astana - he will surely be impressed by his attitude.

Some players may well have ruled themselves out in a precautionary move that is unnecessary, but Bitton has made it clear that he is willing to play through the pain barrier if it helps the Bhoys reach the next round of the Champions League.

And, perhaps secretly, Rodgers will be hoping that the rest of his squad show similar levels of dedication in future as it will surely boost their chances of achieving more success. 

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