2017/18 looked set to be a breakthrough season for Tony Ralston at Celtic.
The 19-year-old was a regular fixture in Brendan Rodgers’ starting XI in the first half of the campaign and was even trusted to start a Champions League clash against Paris Saint-Germain.
While the Hoops were on the wrong end of a 5-0 thumping at Parkhead, Ralston was praised for his handling of the world’s most expensive footballer, Neymar.
As such, a new four-year deal signed in December was just rewards for his performances.
But Ralston has been strangely absent from the starting line-up since his recent return to injury. He has not made an appearance since September despite the poor form of Mikael Lustig, with centre-half Kristoffer Ajer chosen ahead of him at right-back for the Old Firm derby clash with Rangers on Sunday.
And reports in the Daily Record stating that Celtic are planning a summer move for the Yeovil Town talent Tom James should perhaps be a concern to Ralston.
The 21-year-old Welshman has been very impressive for the Glovers since Cardiff City let him leave on a free in January of last year, and he earned rave reviews for his performance in the FA Cup clash with Manchester United in January.
It is understood that Premier League duo Swansea City and Bournemouth are also keen on a player who would cost around £500,000.
But would the addition of another young right-back suggest that Ralston has some way to go before he convinces Rodgers that he is the future of Celtic’s defence?