Spartak Moscow's Aiden McGeady emotional about Celtic reunion

 

Aiden McGeady will experience a "strange feeling" when he lines up for Spartak Moscow against former club Celtic in the Champions League tonight.

The Russian side host Neil Lennon's team on the artificial turf of the Luzhniki Stadium and McGeady, who signed from Celtic in 2010 for £9.5m, will have to contend with mixed emotions at facing his boyhood heroes.

"It'll be the first time I've faced Celtic," the winger said. "I try to catch most Celtic games on TV and I keep up to date with what's going on online. But, obviously, I'm now a Spartak player.

"Of course, Celtic are the team I grew up with, the team I support and the team I grew to love, but tonight that all goes out the window."

McGeady, who scored 31 goals in 147 league appearances for Celtic, admitted he is already excited at the prospect of going back to Glasgow for the return game.

"To just be back playing at Parkhead, for a different team, it's going to be a great experience," he added. "When the draw came out my phone was ringing off the hook with everyone phoning and texting me about the draw and how good it was."

McGeady was rested for the 3-1 win over Amkar at the weekend which took Spartak to fifth in the Russian Premier League, four points behind leaders Anzhi Makhachkala.

Spartak are looking for their first points in Group G, though, after losing 3-2 at Barcelona in their opening game. For their part, the Scottish champions played out a goalless home draw against Benfica.

Lennon, the Celtic manager, is wary of the threat McGeady will pose. "He has improved since his days at Celtic," Lennon said. "In the games I have watched Spartak play, Aiden has probably been their best attacking player.

"He looks in good condition. We all know how good he is on the ball but his movement off the ball is excellent. He covers the ground very quickly and he will be a threat. He will want to win the game and he will want to play well."

Celtic (possible, 4-4-1-1): Forster; Lustig, Wilson, Ambrose, Izaguirre; Forrest, Brown, Wanyama, Mulgrew; Commons; Hooper

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory
Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Aussie skipper Michael Clarke was lured into believing that what we witnessed at Edgbaston and Trent Bridge would continue in London, says Kevin Garside
Can Rafael Benitez get the best out of Gareth Bale at Real Madrid?

Can Benitez get the best out of Bale?

Back at the club he watched as a boy, the pressure is on Benitez to find a winning blend from Real's multiple talents. As La Liga begins, Pete Jenson asks if it will be enough to stop Barcelona
Athletics World Championships 2015: Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jessica Ennis-Hill and Katarina Johnson-Thompson heptathlon rivalry

Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jess and Kat rivalry

The last time the two British heptathletes competed, Ennis-Hill was on the way to Olympic gold and Johnson-Thompson was just a promising teenager. But a lot has happened in the following three years
Jeremy Corbyn: Joining a shrewd operator desperate for power as he visits the North East

Jeremy Corbyn interview: A shrewd operator desperate for power

His radical anti-austerity agenda has caught the imagination of the left and politically disaffected and set a staid Labour leadership election alight
Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief: Defender of ancient city's past was killed for protecting its future

Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief

Robert Fisk on the defender of the ancient city's past who was killed for protecting its future