Celtic winger Mikey Johnston has pulled out of Scotland’s under-20 squad as doubts reign over his fitness levels, as confirmed by international boss Scott Gemmill.
The 19-year-old winger has been on the fringes of the first team this season, playing nine times under Brendan Rodgers, four coming among the starting XI, and featuring a handful more times on the substitutes’ bench.
However Gemmill has revealed that the young talent is not fit enough to feature for the Scottish under-20s during the current international break and as such has pulled out of the squad to return to Parkhead.
He told the Scottish Sun: “We’ve had a couple of players pull out through injuries which is unfortunate. Mikey isn’t ready to play. We won’t be calling any others into the squad.”
The vagueness of Gemmill’s statement over the Celtic winger should come as a concern to the Hoops, who might not have known there was anything wrong with their man before the international break. Simply stating he is not ready to play suggests there has been an issue which has kept him out from playing, so unless the Bhoys are keeping everyone else in the dark over the situation, this could be of some worry. Johnston has impressed in his cameo appearances so far this season and would have been hoping to impress on the international stage to try and force his way into Brendan Rodgers’ plans on a more regular basis. It seems that is not to be for the foreseeable future, and the Bhoys’ priority now will be to find out just what is wrong with their forward and get him on the patch to recovery. How long that takes depends on how severe the blow is, and while Gemmill’s decision not to go into detail might be a cause for concern, it also suggests it is nothing too serious.