02 Mar Jim Duffy bemoans lack of preparation before Morton’s cup clash
Morton’s preparations for their William Hill Scottish Cup quarter-final clash with Celtic have been severely hit by the weather, according to manager Jim Duffy.
Heavy snow and strong winds throughout Scotland have caused severe disruption to the road and rail networks, but the game at Celtic Park is set to go ahead on Saturday.
It was already set to be an uphill task for Ladbrokes Championship side Morton against league champions and cup favourites Celtic, but the task has been made harder after the weather meant they were unable to train during the week.
Celtic got through a training session at Parkhead on Friday, but Duffy’s men were left frustrated and just about managed to have a kickabout ahead of their biggest game of the season.
“No players could get out and we were told quite categorically not to travel, so we didn’t do anything on Wednesday,” the Morton boss told the club website.
“On Thursday, a few players could manage to get out but unfortunately we couldn’t get any facilities because our normal place was closed so we didn’t get to do any training.
“We managed to get a little bit of fresh air and blow off the cobwebs today (Friday) which was bitingly cold, but it was important to get the players in a group together before of the match against Celtic.
“Although we couldn’t do too much, we managed to do 45 minutes just getting a touch of the ball again and that was important.”
Despite that, Duffy is not using the lack of preparation or training time as an excuse to try and call the game off but fears his players could risk injury by playing against Brendan Rodgers’ side.
He said: “Other teams will play who are part-time, so I don’t think we can look at that.
“The difficulty is that the players had a game on Tuesday night and they’ve not had the recovery time to get their legs going again so that could impact on possible injuries.
“If you go and play a top-class side and the tempo that game will be played at, and their muscles haven’t recovered yet, then there is a possibility of injury.
“We can’t think about that and have to prepare in the best way we can and give 100 per cent on the day.”