Celtic's Emilio Izaguirre eyes Christmas return

Emilio Izaguirre on his crutches
Izaguirre expects to be able to throw away his crutches this week

Celtic left-back Emilio Izaguirre hopes to be back playing by Christmas despite the ankle injury he suffered in August.

That is likely to prove optimistic, with Celtic's medical staff having previously earmarked February for the 25-year-old Hunduran's return.

But the defender is encouraged by the news that he will be able to throw away his crutches by the end of this week.

"The operation went really well and I hope I could be back for Christmas," said Izaguirre.

He hopes to start running again within eight weeks and views the signing by Celtic of Morocco left-back Badr El Kaddouri as an added incentive rather than a threat.

The 30-year-old has arrived as cover for Izaguirre on a six-month loan deal from Dynamo Kiev, but Celtic have an option to turn that into a permanent switch from the Ukrainian outfit.

"For me, it is a motivation to recover and get better soon and win my place back," said Izaguirre.

"I am sad at having to miss games because my son likes to see me play at Celtic Park."