In late August, the Boys signed the Croatian right-back on a five-year deal for a reported fee of £2.5m. At that point in the new season, Ralston had started all of Celtic’s league games as the first-choice right back.
However, while talking on A Celtic State of Mind, Dykes suggested that Ralston, as well as Stephen Welsh, will ultimately lose their spots in the team due to the new signings of Juranovic and Cameron Carter-Vickers, who arrived on loan from Tottenham Hotspur on deadline day.
Dykes explained (08:14): “I think that although Stephen Welsh will be feeling hard done by, we called it last week in the run-up to the game, Stephen Welsh is gonna sit it out.
“You’re not bringing in a centre-half of that quality and not playing him. And I think that as the season progresses, Tony Ralston will probably fall victim to that way of thinking as well.
“He [Ange Postecoglou] will play Juranovic when he’s fit and I think he’ll play Carter-Vickers when he is fit.”
TIF thoughts on Anthony Ralston, Josip Juranovic and Celtic…
Having come through a number of Celtic youth teams, Ralston has made over 30 appearances for the senior side, with 12 of them already coming so far this season. Considering that Ralston has the second highest rating (as per WhoScored) of anyone in the Celtic squad in the Scottish Premiership so far this season – perhaps suggesting that he could fall victim to Ange’s potential way of thinking is a big claim to make.
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Interestingly enough, since joining, Juranovic has featured at left-back as well as at right-back, and so it does seem possible that the two could play together if needed.
However, it seems more likely that these two will fight it out for the single spot on the right-side, given that is where Juranovic is most comfortable, of Celtic’s backline this season, and if Dykes’ prediction is correct it could unfortunately be a losing battle for Ralston.