Brendan Rodgers forecasts improved Tony Ralston Celtic role

Brendan Rodgers has promised an improved Celtic role for Tony Ralston next season after the fullback was named in Steve Clarke’s Scotland squad. The right-back was named in the initial 28-man squad for Euro 2024 just days after an impressive display for the Scottish Champions.

Speaking ahead of Saturday’s Scottish Cup Final, Rodgers was asked about Ralston’s inclusion to the squad, explaining why his game time was limited and how he believed he was prepared to help Scotland in Germany.

“He will feature more for me next season. Part of this season was that Ali was the first choice. Tony came in and played some games and Ali had been out for a while, and when he came back, I needed to get him games to get him up to speed.

Celtic v St Mirren –  Luis Palma right celebrates with Anthony Ralston after scoring the winning goal during the Scottish Premiership match at Celtic Park on Saturday May 18, 2024. Photo Andrew Milligan

“That meant Tony hasn’t played so much. But I know he is always ready because if he is not playing in games, his training is the game. So, he trains every day and his standard, his quality, his mentality is like that of a game.

“That’s why I can put him in against St Mirren in the last game of the season and he is running up in the 90th minute making a cross to score the winning goal. Why? Because he trains himself.

Anthony Ralston of Scotland celebrates after he scores the opening goal during the UEFA Nations League League B Group 1 match between Scotland and Armenia at Hampden on June 08, 2022. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

“He is a wonderful example of someone who treats his training like it’s a game so that when he comes in, he is game ready.

“I know Scotland have a couple of injuries, but even with those players available, Tony is a great option for them and has played at the highest level in Champions League games.

“He is a winner, he has that mentality, and he would never let Scotland down ever.”

Ralston will be hoping that he can impress Clarke and make the right wingback role his own given the absences of Nathan Patterson and Aaron Hickey. Although, before International duty, Ralston will be hoping that Celtic can defeat theRangers at Hampden to deliver the Scottish Cup back to Paradise.

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Born just as Celtic were stopping the Ten, Lubo98 follows Celtic home and away and helps run his local Celtic Supporters Club. He goes to all the games and is a Law Graduate. Has a particular fondness for Tom Rogic among the current Celts and both Lubo and Henrik form his earliest Celtic memories.

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