5 key things noticed at Celtic pre-season training as new signing Benjamin Siegrist impresses
Ange Postecoglou’s side returned for the first day of pre-season at Lennoxtown on Monday morning.
Celtic fans will be eagerly anticipating the return to competitive action for Ange Postecoglou’s side.
Yesterday morning marked the first day of pre-season for the Parkhead club as the Australian cast his eye over a reduced number of players during their opening training session at Lennoxtown.
The Scottish champions are due to fly to Austria for a 10-day training camp next week and several first-team stars, who were involved in international matches last month, will join up with the squad for the trip.
GlasgowWorld noticed five key things on Day 1 of pre-season:
Kewell settles into new coaching role
The former Liverpool and Leeds United winger joined the Hoops in the close season and enjoyed his first day on the training pitch alongside fellow countryman Ange Postecoglou.
The Australian kept a close eye on the players as they were put through a series of fitness tests and it’s likely he’ll get more involved in the coming weeks once he adjusts to Postecoglou’s regime.
Kewell had been out of work since last September after he was sacked as manager of Barnet but he was all smiles yesterday chatting to the Hoops boss.
Siegrist showcases his skills
The Swiss goalkeeper immediately set about showcasing what he has to offer as the Hoops latest signing looks to compete for the No.1 jersey.
The 30-year-old took part in various training drills alongside fellow stoppers Joe Hart, Scott Bain, Ross Doohan and ‘B’ team keeper Tobi Oluwayemi.
Goalkeeping coach Stevie Woods put the quintet through their paces as they got their work underway for the new season.
Youth players earn chance to shine
A host of young talents were called up to training, with Rocco Vata, Bosun Lawal, Ben Summers and Johnny Kenny all aiming to impress the Celtic coaching staff.
Vata, the son of former Hoops defender Rudi, is rated as one of the most promising youngsters in the academy set-up and he will be eyeing a first-team breakthough in the next couple of years.
Whether they can nail down a regular place in the first-team squad for the coming season remains to be seen, with loan deals in senior football likely to be on the horizon for some.
Their current intention will be to catch the eye of Postecoglou ahead of starting their second season in the Lowland League.
Osaze Urhoghide and Liam Shaw have also returned to the first-team fold after loan spells at KV Oostende and Motherwell respectively.
Karamoko heading for exit?
A host of big names were missing on the opening day due to their recent involvement in international matches, with the likes of Callum McGregor and Kyogo Furuhashi allowed an extended break.
However, one player whose future remains up in the air is out-of-contract winger Karamoko Dembele.
The 19-year-old fractured his ankle during pre-season last year, which reduced his game time, making just two substitute appearances.
First-team opportunities have been limited under Postecoglou and he was a noticable absentee from yesterday’s session. He exit hasn’t yet been officially confirmed.
Which players were involved in first training session?
Based on video footage and images posted on Celtic’s official social media channels, the following players took part in the first day of pre-season:
First-team - Joe Hart, Benjamin Siegrist, Scott Bain, Ross Doohan, Christopher Jullien, Osaze Urhoghide, Reo Hatate, James McCarthy, Yosuke Ideguchi, Liam Shaw, Mikey Johnston, James Forrest, Johnny Kenny
Reserve team - Tobi Oluwayemi, Bosun Lawal, Ben Summers, Rocco Vata
Absent - Greg Taylor, Carl Starfelt, Cameron-Carter-Vickers, Stephen Welsh, Anthony Ralston, Josip Juranovic, Callum McGregor, Matt O’Riley, David Turnbull, Liel Abada, Giorgos Giakoumakis, Kyogo Furuhashi, Daizen Maeda