Celtic to face Ligue 1 side Rennes in Portugal friendly as skipper Callum McGregor provides major injury boost

The influential midfielder has been missing since October but could feature against the French outfit next week

Celtic are set to receive a major injury boost with Callum McGregor nearing a return to first-team action ahead of the Scottish Premiership restart later this month.

While sitting out of both Sydney Super Cup friendlies defeats against Sydney FC and Everton, McGregor was involved in several first-team training sessions at various points of the trip as he continues his recovery.

Celtic captain Callum McGregor is set to return in a pre-season friendly. (Photo by Martin Rose/Getty Images)

Now, according to the Scottish Sun, the influential midfielder ‘worked tirelessly’ Down Under and could make his return to the pitch next Saturday when Celtic take on Ligue 1 side Rennes in a friendly, seven days before the domestic action resumes.

Ange Postecoglou’s side will travel to Portugal for a warm weather training camp next week and have confirmed a bounce match against the French outfit, which will take place in Faro. It’s the first time the two sides have met in a competitive game since a Europa League clash in season 2018/19.

McGregor had been pencilled in for an appearance against Aberdeen at Pittodrie on December 17 but he could gain valuable minutes under his belt ahead of the second half of the season a week earlier than planned.

His imminent comeback could allow Matt O’Riley, who has deputised in the deep-lying midfield role in McGregor’s absence, to move further up the park where he has made a striking impact since arriving from MK Dons back in January.

The Premiership leaders face Aberdeen, Livingston and St Johnstone before Christmas as they aim to secure a second title in a row.