Strachan to rest Nakamura for cup clash

Shunsuke Nakamura looks set to be rested for Celtic’s Scottish Cup clash with Dundee after suffering a groin injury.

Shunsuke Nakamura looks set to be rested for Celtic’s Scottish Cup clash with Dundee after suffering a groin injury.

The Japanese midfielder was injured in last weekend’s 2-2 Premier League draw against Dundee United and has been removed from first-team training this week.

Nakamura, 30, is hoping to rejoin his team-mates tomorrow and is targeting the following weekend’s SPL trip to Aberdeen.

He said in the Evening Times: “The pain I felt at the weekend when I had to come off during the game against Dundee United is much better, and I’ll perhaps be able to train again with the team tomorrow.

“I am preparing for the game against Aberdeen, but I’ve been told the injury is in an unusual place and that there is the possibility it may come back if not treated properly.”

Manager Gordon Strachan has hinted he may make changes for this weekend’s visit of First Division Dundee, and that could mean a return for Aiden McGeady.

The Republic of Ireland midfielder is hoping to draw a line under his bust-up with Strachan after deciding not to appeal against the punishment imposed on him.

Strachan also wants to use Saturday’s game to ease striker Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink and midfielder Marc Crosas back into first-team combat following their injury lay-offs.

He told Celtic View: “It would be nice for Jan and Marc to get some games.

“On Monday, we had a 70-minute game for the players who didn’t start on Saturday.

“That was just to try to get them back to match fitness as soon as possible. Marc and Jan have been two big performers for us and it will be good to get them back playing.”

Right-back Jean-Joel Perrier-Doumbe hopes some of Celtic’s fringe men are also given the nod this weekend.

He said in the Evening Times: “I have six months left on my contract and my aim is to fight my way into the first team and play as much as possible.

“I feel a lot fitter and I’ve played a few games for the reserves.”

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