Celtic won’t take Stranraer test lightly in Scottish Cup tie

Celtic manager Ronny Deila.
Celtic manager Ronny Deila.

It’s Scottish Cup weekend and for Celtic there is an away game that is certainly a potential banana skin, even if a trip to Stair Park to face Scottish League One side Stranraer is at the extreme end of the likely shock outcomes on Sunday.

Stranraer currently lie eighth in their division, in the third tier of Scottish football, but this is a cup tie and Ronny Deila will be all too aware that League form means nothing as far as this game is concerned.

Meanwhile, with the transfer window open both Inverness Caledonian Thistle and Leeds United have enquired about the availability on loan of striker Anthony Stoke.

Assistant manager John Collins said: “There are a number of clubs interested in him but we won’t force him to go somewhere he doesn’t want to go.”

Collins was however at pains to emphasise that there is no question of any move spelling the end of the player’s Parkhead career.

“The door is always open. His attitude lately in training has been very good. He needs games. He’s had a few at Under-20 level but he needs first-team games.”

As far as Sunday is concerned the Parkhead men have in recent years suffered elimination at the hands of lower League clubs of the ilk of Clyde (on a day when Roy Keane made his debut for the club), Ross County and Inverness Caledonian Thistle, but defeat at Stranraer would represent as great a cup shock as any in the competition’s history.

For that reason alone, if for no other, Ronny Deila will surely ensure that Celtic produce a professional job to progress to the fifth round with the minimum of fuss.