By Matt Farr
Celtic icon John Collins believes Patrick Roberts is a better player than Raheem Sterling.
Roberts, 20, has spent the last season-and-a-half on loan at the Scottish club from Premier League giants Manchester City, and may have played his last game for Celtic in the 2-0 win over Hearts on Sunday.
He bagged an assist during the victory, ending a superb week where he has contributed two goals and two assists from his last two appearances.
The young winger is expected to return to his parent club at the end of the season, but Celtic have refused to rule out the possibility of him returning for another spell at Parkhead.
However, former Hoops midfielder Collins believes Roberts could be a big part of Pep Guardiola’s plans at the Etihad next season, and that he is already better than City team-mate Sterling.
He said on Sky Sports 2’s live coverage of the game: “I think he’ll go back to Manchester City. I think he’s better than Raheem Sterling. Sterling cost £50million and he [Roberts] scores goals and is more creative than him.
“I think he’s got the quality. I’d love for him to stay at Celtic and entertain the Celtic fans but I think he’ll return.”
Roberts has been in exceptional form this season, scoring 11 goals and contributing 19 assists as Celtic finished their title-winning Scottish Premiership campaign undefeated.
Celtic still have one game left to play this season, against Aberdeen in the Scottish Cup Final at the end of the month, but it remains to be seen if Roberts will have a role to play.
The meeting with Aberdeen on May 27 clashes with England’s Under 20 World Cup Finals campaign, and it would be difficult for Roberts to compete on both fronts.
Sterling, meanwhile, has contributed 10 goals and 21 assists from 47 appearances in all competitions for Manchester City this season, and could face competition for a first-team place from Roberts next term.
In other Celtic news, Chris Sutton has taken another Twitter dig at Rangers after Kris Boyd’s comments.