LEIGH GRIFFITHS insists Celtic fans need not fear over the delayed transfer for Jota - because James Forrest is still on the books.

Former Parkhead striker Griffiths left Celtic last season after eight years at the club but is still invested following the club as he searches for his next move.

And while fans are desperate for loan star Jota to sign permanent terms in Glasgow, Griffiths is much more relaxed as he tipped Forrest for a major year.

Dubbing Forrest the best player at Celtic, Griffiths insisted he's a key player for Ange Postecoglou and could play a crucial role if he avoids injury.

Speaking to the Daily Record, Griffiths said: “I don’t think the Celtic fans should be panicking over the delay in Jota signing on for next season.

"James is the main man at the club in the wide areas. Jota had a brilliant season and the fans love him – but James has done it season after season and can be the key player again in the coming campaign.

“Everyone knows he’s had his injuries but I don’t think there’s a player who works as hard behind the scenes as Jamesie.

"He needs to stay injury free but when you see him in training and in full flow he’s incredible.

"I’m sure boys like Scott Brown and Callum McGregor would back me up when we are asked who is the best player at Celtic?

“Most of his team-mates will say it’s James Forrest. He does things in training that make you stand back and go, ‘Wow.’

"I know James well and he’ll be wanting to shut a few people up as he’s been knocked time after time and just come roaring back.

“Ask any Celtic player who wows them in training and James will always be on the tip of their tongue.”

Jota is widely expected to sign full-time terms at Celtic after a successful loan spell last season.

The Benfica winger quickly became a fan favourite at Parkhead and Celtic hold a £6.4million option to buy the attacker.