Date: 3rd February 2020 at 6:10am
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Stephen Welsh has played his way straight into Neil Lennon’s first team plans.

Ten days ago he was preparing to play for Morton away to Dundee United when he was recalled by Celtic and sat on the bench for the win over Ross County.

In midweek he was watching from the stand at St Johnstone but an injury to Jozo Simunovic saw him pitched into a debut at Hamilton yesterday with many fans claiming that he was Celtic’s best defender.

Welsh enjoyed a very impressive debut before making way for Tom Rogic after 76 minutes as Lennon stepped up the pressure on the Hamilton goal.

Speaking to The Sun the Celtic boss said:

Young Welsh was excellent and he can be proud because he was faultless. It gives me food for thought going forwards. Jozo Simunovic will hopefully be back for Wednesday. The subs gave us fresh impetus. Once Ryan found his feet he was superb, Jonny gave us more down the left and Tom was very good.

James Forrest was outstanding and I was so pleased he got his goal. Our big players played well. We’ve had a lot of injuries and people overlook that. Once I can get the majority fit we’ll have more strength because we’ve got a big February. I hope we can get stronger. We need that depth for the games we will play.

We were toying with going for four at the back at one stage today, but we kept with it and the subs found good areas. The second goal was wonderful, then the third was well worked.

The win at Hamilton stretched Celtic’s lead at the top of the table to seven points with five successive wins since returning from the winter break.

On Wednesday the hoops head to Motherwell looking to extend their winning run while increasing the pressure at Ibrox where Hibs are the visitors.