Champions League is priority for Celtic keeper Fraser Forster

FRASER FORSTER is ignoring all the speculation about his future as clubs line up to try and prise him away from Celtic in a big-money move.

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Fraser Forster is looking forward to Celtic's Champions League opener after returning to training
Fraser Forster is looking forward to Celtic's Champions League opener after returning to training

In fact, the Hoops No.1 is looking no further ahead than Iceland a week today when he wants to be back in goal for his side's first Champions League qualifier.

With Craig Gordon joining Lukasz Zaluska and rising star Leo Fasan in the queue behind Forster to get the nod from Ronny Deila next week, the man just back after his stint with England at the World Cup finals knows he can't rest on his laurels.

And, after just a couple of day's training with his team-mates in Austria, he is hoping to get at least some game time in tonight's friendly against LSK Linz and Friday's final prep match, against Dukla Prague.

With the first leg of their tie against KR Reykjavik so important, Forster is raring to go.

And he is already enjoying working under the new boss, who he is eager to show he still deserves to be the club's No.1.

Forster said: "When the season was over, you think about the World Cup. Now the World Cup is finished, you think about getting back here for pre-season and hitting the ground running.

"At some point, there will be time to sit down and look back at last season. But, for now, we need to be focused on what's coming up and the games we are going to face.

"It's important we are switched on and everyone gives 100 per cent through this pre-season. We all know how big the Champions League games are. They are going to be tough."

With the qualifiers very much on the horizon, Deila - who is still awaiting news on how long skipper Scott Brown will be sidelined with his hamstring injury - wants his squad to step up the intensity of their play, starting tonight.

Forster is just getting to know the Norwegian, and his assistant, John Collins. But, he can see a lot of changes to the way the squad works, and plays.

All of which has brought extra impetus to all that they are doing.

"I have just been back with the squad for a short time," Forster told Celtic TV as he swapped Rio for their training base at Bad Leonfelden.

"From what others have said, there is a real freshness about the squad. The new manager and John Collins coming in will be good.

"They want to play a very attractive kind of football, and it will be fantastic to be a part of that, really getting the ball down and playing well. It will take a bit of time for us to adapt to.

"But it is something all of the lads are fully focused on and looking forward to, more than anything.

"Everyone seems really fit, and have come back to pre-season in great shape. So, hopefully, we can hit the ground running when the first Champions League game comes along."


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