McLeish Exclusive: SPL & SFA may be to blame for 'Baffling' Ryan Christie development
Alex McLeish admits he is baffled that Kieran Tierney was allowed to play for Arsenal when Ryan Christie was forced to sit out for Celtic on Saturday.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Scotland manager admits the different rules between countries and governing bodies has muddied the waters during the Coronavirus pandemic.
Christie, who was put into self-isolation alongside Tierney after Stuart Armstrong provided a positive Covid-19 test on international duty, missed Celtic’s 2-0 defeat to Rangers on Saturday.
However, the Arsenal full-back was allowed to start and play the full 90 minutes against Manchester City just hours after his old side’s defeat at Parkhead.
McLeish admits he is confused as to how the rules can be so different for the respective players in the same situation.
“Different countries, different rules, different ruling bodies, different governments,” McLeish told Football Insider.
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“Different governments have been given their own jurisdiction to do what they feel is right for their territory. I don’t know who to blame – was it the Scottish government, was it the Scottish FA, the SPL?
“There’s rules in place but it was baffling to most people why Tierney could play and Christie couldn’t.”
🗣️ NL on squad: "Ryan Christie will be back in the squad. Odsonne is undergoing some health and safety tests so that we can be as safe as possible for his return. We're hoping to have him back for the weekend. Jullien and Forrest are still out." #CELACM #UEL
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) October 21, 2020
Saturday’s derby day defeat was the first game that Christie has missed across all competitions this season.
As confirmed by Neil Lennon, the 25-year-old is back in contention for the squad to face AC Milan in the Europa League group stage on Thursday.
In other Celtic news, the Hoops are working on a defender signing as eight-figure price tag plummets.