While Cameron Carter-Vickers is a shock omission from the United States squad for their forthcoming matches his central defensive partner at Celtic Carl Starfelt has made the Sweden squad and that news comes with the added bonus for Celtic supporters that the injury that caused Starfelt to go off at half-time in the 3-0 Scottish Cup semi-final win over Hearts is not going to keep him on the sidelines.
And both Japan’s top goalscorer this season Kyogo and his Celtic teammate and current Scottish Premiership Player of the Month have been excluded from the Japan squad with the manager suggesting that the quality of the league is a concern.
Meanwhile the Sweden manager Janne Andersson provided an updated when quizzed on Starfelt’s inclusion in his squad for the upcoming Euro qualifiers against Belgium and Azerbaijan, despite the Celtic player’s latest injury problem.
After the win at Tynecastle Ange Postecoglou explained the situation concerning his half-time change, replacing Starfelt with Japanese defender Yuki Kobayashi.
“He felt a niggle in his hip flexor during the warm-up actually. He felt it early on in the game but we got it through to half-time and we could see he wasn’t moving well in the first half. You could see he wasn’t his normal self so we made the change,” the Celtic manager explained.
Despite this Sweden boss Andersson looks set to start Starfelt next week to give the Celtic defender his sixth cap. Anderson is quoted in Glasgow Times saying: “The forecast with Carl Starfelt is quite positive. He should be available otherwise I would not have called him.”
Whether Ange Postecoglou will risk Starfelt on Saturday in the game against Hibs or instead include the impressive left sided defender Yuki Kobayashi remains to be seen but one thing is for sure, the Sweden manager has no such reservations as his counter-parts in the United States or Japan when selecting players from the Scottish Premiership.