Celtic boss Neil Lennon has confirmed that Ryan Christie will not play again this season, ruling him out of the SFA cup final.

The midfielder suffered facial injuries in a clash with Dominic Ball during an ill-tempered semi-final tie with Aberdeen.

There were hopes that he may be fit enough to feature in the showpiece event on May 25th, but Lennon has put any chances of that to bed.

Speaking to Celtic TV, he said:

“Ryan has multiple fractures of the eye socket, jaw and cheekbone, so the prognosis isn’t good for the rest of the season really. He’s had a great season, he’s a huge player for us and it was a really horrendous collision.

“With it being multiple fractures, it’s going to take a bit more time. We just have to look after him as best as we can and get him back for the start of next season, and we wish him a speedy recovery.”

This will come as a real blow to Celtic, and to Christie. The playmaker has been in fine form this season, and even after such a sickening clash, he will have held outside hopes of making an appearance at Hampden Park.

That is clearly out of the question now, and all he can do now is pick himself up, dust himself down, and get ready for the new season. The only good thing to come from this is that fractures do heal simply, unlike other injuries, and it shouldn’t prevent him from keeping his fitness up during his spell on the sidelines.

That will be of little consolation at the moment, but sometimes you have to focus on the silver linings when you get a piece of news like this one. Christie will come back stronger for this experience, and you just hope now that his teammates can lift the trophy on his behalf.