Sixteen months after making a scoring debut against Motherwell James Forrest was again on target against the Lanarkshire side yesterday.
The teenager was joined on the scoresheet on 1 May 2010 by Darren O’Dea, Robbie Keane and Aiden McGeady with none Forrest the only survivor from that date in yesterday’s team.
After having last season interupted by a succession of niggling muscle injuries the 20-year-old was the unanimous winner of yesterday’s man-of-the-match award with two well executed goals bookmarking his contribution.
Neil Lennon worked with Forrest two years ago during his time in charge of the Celtic development squad and is better placed than most to judge the player’s progress.
“James was superb,” the Celtic boss admitted after yesterday’s win. “We are trying to sort of break him in because he is prone to picking up niggling injuries.
“That is only the second start of the season but that’s his best performance I’ve seen from him, he was exceptional and I’ve known him a while.
“I don’t want to build him up too much but he could easily have had a hat-trick today. I’ve had him for a year and a half now and I see an improvement all the time- he’s a strong boy that can play on either side and there are goals in him.”
“It was an excellent win, the best we’ve played this season. I thought we were dynamic at times. I’m delighted with the manner of the performance, the result and the four goals. That was more like us from last year.”
With only Kelvin Wilson and Badr El Kaddouri over 23 yesterday’s side may have been the youngest ever Celtic team.
10 September 2011: Forster; Matthews, K. Wilson, Mulgrew, El Kaddouri; Forrest, Ki, Kayal (Wanyama 82), Ledley (Commons 70); Stokes (Bangura 67), Hooper
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