By Harvey Byrne

Brendan Rodgers has revealed Nir Bitton has returned to training, while Erik Sviatchenko will return to training on Sunday following injuries.

The pair have recovered from injuries suffered in the build-up to the new campaign.

Bitton came off in the friendly against Barcelona after suffering a knee injury.

Meanwhile, Sviatchenko also picked up a knee injury in training ahead of the Hoops’ Champions League clash against Astana.

However, Rodgers has revealed that the two are close to full recoveries and that Bitton will even be in contention for Wednesday’s Champions League qualifying clash against Hapoel Be’er Sheva.

“Nir trained this morning & he looked fine so he comes into the reckoning & Eric is back training tomorrow,” said Rodgers, as quoted by the club’s Twitter page.

However, the manager didn’t offer any updates on injured quartet Jozo Simunovic, Dedryck Boyata, Patrick Roberts and Gary Mackay-Steven.

The Hoops will travel to Bitton’s homeland, Israel on Wednesday to face Hapoel Be’er Sheva in the Champions League play off stages.

Celtic have already seen off Lincoln Red Imps and Astana in their 2016-17 Champions League campaign.

If they progress through to the next round, they will have got further than they managed last season after suffering a 4-3 defeat on aggregate against Swedish club Malmo at the play off stage.

In other Celtic team news, Chris Sutton has backed incoming new signing Dorus de Vries to improve current number one Craig Gordon.