Saturday, February 21, 2009

Sheridan to sit-out Celtic v Motherwell game

There will be no place for Cillian Sheridan in the Motherwell attack against Celtic on Sunday – the young Irishman is on loan from the club and cannot play against them – but that could work against the Parkhead side, according to Mark McGhee.

The Motherwell manager said: "To be truthful, if Cillian had been OK to turn out I would probably have played 4-4-2 with him and David Clarkson up front.

"But now I'll maybe leave Clarkson on his own and as a result we should be a bit stuffier. The fact that we can't play him might not help Celtic."

There is no official rule about loan players being prohibited from facing their main employers, but Scottish clubs observe a self-denying ordinance. "If Sheridan played against us it would be an awful lot of pressure on him," said Gordon Strachan, the Celtic manager.

"What if he got a penalty kick in the last minute and cost us points? Or what if he fouled in the Motherwell box and we got a last-minute winner from that?"

Strachan, though, believes that Motherwell pose considerable threat even without Sheridan. "They weren't doing well earlier in the season but that's because Mark had a lot of players missing from a small squad. Since they've come back you can see the difference in Motherwell's form – they're on a run now and we have to be very careful."

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