Stephen Welsh reckons signing a new four-year contract at Celtic is his perfect scenario.

And the young defender now hopes to celebrate the deal by helping his team take last weekend’s “unplayable” form into Sunday’s Scottish Cup crunch against Rangers.

Welsh has penned an agreement which ties him to Parkhead until 2025, having cemented his spot in the top team.

The 21-year-old centre-back has progressed through the academy and has been rewarded for his work just 14 months after making his full debut against Hamilton.

Welsh said: “Obviously I’m delighted to get it done. I’m here for another four years which is the perfect scenario for me.

Welsh has become a regular in Celtic's first team this season
Welsh has become a regular in Celtic's first team this season

“I’ve been getting a consistent run of games after the Christmas period and it’s about keeping doing that and keep playing well, hopefully, until the end of the season now.

“I’ve not played a lot of games. It’s when you play 50 or 100 games like the other boys who have come through the academy have done. It’s putting that form consistently, doing well and working hard in training and getting your chance.

“It’s about being a bit lucky as well. Hopefully it all comes together.

“There’s only a couple of people from each age group who will make it. There’s not many. You need to do a bit extra whatever it is to try. It’s very hard to come through.

“You always need to believe you will get your chance. It’s very hard at this club with so many big players, especially in my position. There’s internationals.

“It’s difficult to try and cement your place. It’s all good playing a couple of games here and there, but to get a consistent run of games is the most difficult thing.”

Stephen Welsh is delighted to have made his breakthrough into the Celtic first-team, though it has been a difficult season
Stephen Welsh is delighted to have made his breakthrough into the Celtic first-team, though it has been a difficult season

Welsh has become a regular in recent weeks with a dozen of his 16 appearances this term coming since the middle of January.

The stopper is again set to partner Kristoffer Ajer at the heart of the Hoops backline for Sunday’s crunch tie against Steven Gerrard ’s team and he’s hoping the cup holders can take the high-performance levels which saw them hammer Livingston 6-0 last weekend across the city to Ibrox.

John Kennedy’s side have captured some form and Welsh said: “The style of play. You saw it at weekend. We were unplayable at times.

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“It could have been eight or nine goals and it was coming. We’ve played well last few weeks and the goals just hadn’t been there.

“But the performance and the chances we created against Livingston were very good and, hopefully, we can take into the weekend now.

“I’m just looking to the end of the season, just now. We’ve got the Scottish Cup to play in and a massive game at the weekend, so we’ll be looking at that first.

“And a good finish to the league. We want to win all our games against the other top six. If we can put a consistent run of games in, we’ll be good going into pre-season.”