Kilmarnock V Ross County at Rugby Park : Match Preview

31 January 2014 04:01
Kilmarnock V Ross County - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.

Johnston welcomes Karlsson arrival

Kilmarnock boss Allan Johnston has warned his teenage attackers that new signing David Moberg Karlsson is out to steal their place.

Killie have lured the Sunderland winger to Rugby Park on a six-month loan deal.

Karlsson - a B#1.5million signing from IFK Gothenburg - has played just once for the Black Cats but Johnston is already raving about the Sweden Under-19 international's talent.

And he has told youngsters like Greg Kiltie, Chris Johnston, Robbie Muirhead and Rory McKenzie they had better not drop their standards or the 19-year-old new arrival will be ready to pounce.

Johnston, who could give Karlsson his Scottish Premiership debut at home to Ross County on Saturday, said: "David is a quality player who can score goals, create chances and can play on both sides of the park.

"It gives us different options and puts pressure on the players already in the side to perform.

"He has already played for Sunderland's first team during a pre-season tournament in Hong Kong, when he scored against Tottenham. He's gone there with a big transfer fee, so I suppose that gives you an idea of the quality he has.

"He's still young and definitely isn't the finished article, but he has talent and hopefully will make a big impact."

While Karlsson was checking into Rugby Park, Killie released Portuguese wideman David Silva and teenage defender Caiomhin Bonner, while Northern Irish winger Jude Winchester has been sent to Cliftonville on a three-month loan.

But Johnston is optimistic that 13-goal striker Kris Boyd will be staying put.

The Killie boss has also handed defender Ismael Bouzid a new six-month contract, even though the former Hearts man has missed the last three months with a knee injury.

"I have to thank the manager for showing his faith in me," said the 30-year-old Algerian international, who could feature against County after returning to training.

"It has been a tough time for me with the injury lately but the club has given me a new contract, which is a huge weight off my mind.

"Now I hope to do my best for the club and try to repay them for their support."

County have added Slovakian right-back Erik Cikos to their squad.

The 25-year-old joined from Slovan Bratislava until the end of the season to become County's seventh signing of the month.

Midfielder Stuart Kettlewell completes a three-match ban while defender Steven Saunders remains on the sidelines with a hamstring injury.

Source: PA

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