A little look behind the curtain, what life is like as a Celtic player

Former Celtic full-back Jim Craig, wrote in his diary last week on The Celtic Star about the kind of build-up the players would be having ahead of the Glasgow Derby on Beautiful Sunday.

Now in this week’s Celtic View another Celtic full-back, this time Kieran Tierney has given us a glimpse into his own preparations for the big match.

And Emilio Izaguirre has revealed that personal reasons were behind his decision to reject a contract extension from Brendan Rodgers last summer and instead move his family out to the Middle East after 7 years as a Celt.

“Before a big game I still go out and play pool or snooker with my friends or play the PlayStation with them, just the normal stuff really,” KT told The Celtic View.

“If you think about it too much and change your routines, you don’t feel as comfortable. You need to surround yourself with friends and people who make you feel positive so you’re not over-thinking it.

“When I’m out with my friends I’m having a laugh with them and we don’t talk about football an awful lot.

“Obviously Celtic is our topic and I like talking about Celtic as well because we all love the club, but we’re all on the same level and just get on with it really. It’s good to chill out and talk about other stuff sometimes and that can help you be mentally refreshed when you come into the games.”

Meanwhile it was pretty sad to read the comments that former Celtic full-back Emilio Izaguirre made concerning the circumstance surrounding his exit from the club after 7 wonderful years wearing the Hoops.

The hugely popular Honduran, who won six league titles, three Scottish cups and two League Cups during his time at Celtic and Brendan Rodgers wanted him to sign a new contract.

Emilio lost his place to KT but was brought back into the side during the winter of the Invincible season when Tierney was injured. Izaguirre played in the Betfred Cup Final in November 2016, which Celtic won 3-0 against Aberdeen.

But when KT recovered he was back in the team and Emilio was back on the bench. Many thought that his wish for first team football was the driving factor in his decision to turn down a new deal and move to the Middle East but he has now explained that this was NOT the case.

In an interview with Diario Deportivo Diez in Honduras, Izaguirre, who now plays for Saudi Arabian outfit Al-Fayha, outlined the reason why he quit Celtic.

“It’s very difficult to talk about,” the 31-year-old said. “There will be a day when I can talk about my departure. I don’t want to but it was due to personal problems that I had with agents in England.”

“That’s why I left. It was hard for me to leave – Brendan Rodgers got angry with me because he counted on me, and I felt guilty leaving. It was hard with my wife and children because of personal things that happened to us.”

Could he come back, one day?

“I left the door open, and you never know what could happen tomorrow.”

Here’s a tribute to Emilio that is well worth a read.

‘Remember me, my name is Emilio,’ and Celtic loves you more than you will know


About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor David Faulds has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email editor@thecelticstar.co.uk

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