Celtic keeper Scott Bain has insisted that he wants the gloves to keep after revealing that there is no animosity between him and Craig Gordon despite leapfrogging his colleague in the goalie pecking order.

Bain has kept his place within Brendan Rodgers’ side after playing the opening game of the year, the Scottish Cup tie against Airdrie. In itself, that was no surprise given that the keeper had been told he would take the place between the sticks for all Cup competitions this term.

However, given that Gordon was arguably Celtic’s best player in the defeat to Rangers at Ibrox at the end of December, there were a few eyebrows raised when Bain hung onto that place as league duty recommenced.

But having put himself as first choice, Bain isn’t up for conceding it.

“Yeah, I back myself 100%,” he said. “I just need to keep working away and keep doing what I have been doing.

“After I signed, the manager had a brief chat with me about playing in the cups. So I knew I would get opportunities to play and try to impress. From there, you never know.

“Craig plays the game to the highest standard and has done so all his career, so it was always going to be difficult.

“I’ve just worked hard on and off the pitch and it has culminated in this run of games. You have to think ‘I’m No.1’.”

Despite taking the position, Bain has maintained that Gordon has been nothing other than supportive.

If there was a sense of trepidation about heading onto the training ground after taking the gloves from the Scotland internationalist, Bain was not for letting on.

“We are all professional, we have all been in a similar situation at some point,” said Bain. “So I knew he would be fine with me. He has always been great and supportive with me. I never really thought about it.

“I’m not sure about something and want to ask him something about a certain position or a certain thing in the game he has always got great advice for me. I will always be open to taking advice from him.

“It isn’t my decision to make, it is obviously the manager’s. He has felt he wanted to give me a run in the team and I am not going to say no.

“We have always got a bit of sympathy for each other because we work so closely together. But like I say it is something that can always happen. My focus is always on doing the best that I can day to day and being ready to play if ever I got the opportunity.”

Rodgers has hinted previously that it is Bain’s ability with the ball at his feet that marks the difference between the two keepers. But for the stopper himself there was a feeling that his performance at Ibrox last March as Celtic won 3-2 was arguably the moment that he felt comfortable himself at this level – as well as feeling as though he had offered an indication to others of his ability to keep his composure when under pressure.

“If I had stayed and played in a game after the split that meant nothing he wouldn’t have been able to see my mentality or if I was able to handle the big occasion,” explained the keeper. “Being thrown into that game has shown that I can play in the biggest game and the hardest atmosphere in a Celtic jersey. It definitely helped me with the manager.”

This is the first time since Bain’s arrival at the club a year ago that he has found himself in the team not because of injury or suspension but because he has been selected as first pick.

It also coincides with a league campaign that is tighter than any other previous ones under Rodgers but the stopper believes that regardless of the circumstances around his selection that the pressure at Celtic is relentless.

“I don’t know if you can get any more pressure playing for this club,” said Bain. “You want to do the best you can for the fans, your manager and your other team mates. I haven’t really thought about it as pressure, I have just been enjoying the games like I have done previously. I have tried not to do anything different from what I have done before. So far it has worked out for me.

“Along with that, my performances in the cup have obviously helped as well. But the manager has shown great faith and trust in me to play me. I am looking to repay him.

“I’ve just done what I’ve always done and taken it game by game. It’s been good to get three games joined together.

“I had a chat with the manager but it was still a surprise when you look at the level of performances Craig puts in. I can’t complain. “We all train as if we are going to play on a Saturday. So we are always ready if we need to play.

“It’s the unfortunate life of a goalkeeper that only one can play at a time. I’ve had to bide my time on the bench and work hard away from playing. It’s good to get a run in the team now.”