By Richard Parks
Celtic have confirmed that centre-back Stephen Welsh has agreed terms and signed a new contract with the club – and fans have delivered mixed verdicts on Twitter.
The Hoops announced on their official Twitter account and official website on Tuesday that Welsh, 18, has extended his stay at Parkhead until the end of the 2019-20 season after paperwork was finalised.
It ties the Celtic academy product to the club for two-and-a-half more years.
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) March 13, 2018
Welsh will now aim to be the next Celtic academy product to break into the first team, following in the footsteps of home-grown aces Kieran Tierney, James Forrest and Callum McGregor.
The defender is yet to earn a senior appearance for the Scottish champions but has been moving up the ranks and is currently a mainstay of the development squad.
He has also been called up to the Scotland Under-19s squad this week along with five of his team-mates and was named in the development squad’s starting XI on Tuesday night for their 4-1 defeat to Falkirk at Lennoxtown.
Fans have taken to social media to react to Welsh’s new deal, with most hailing it as “great” news, although one claimed he did not want to hear until the club had agreed new terms with first teamer Tom Rogic.
Here is a selection of their messages on Twitter:
Well done Stephen ????
— kelly mcguire (@kellymcguire6) March 13, 2018
I read that as Stephen Walsh @stevie_bhoy32 and though you were living a double life ????
— skyesmum (@martinam93) March 13, 2018
That’s great. Now wit about Rogic. Don’t talk to me till he’s signed.
— David Gray (@Che_Ntcham) March 13, 2018
@stephen_welsh17 well done on new contract Stephen ????☘️
— paul the tim (@paulthetim) March 13, 2018
Congratulations to @stephen_welsh17 who has been named in the Scotland Under-19s squad for the upcoming UEFA Under-19 Championship Elite Round matches in Germany. #SCO19s ???????????????????????????? pic.twitter.com/WkLAvfVtIh
— Deadline Day Football Consultants (@DeadlineDay_FC) March 12, 2018