Paulo Bernardo didn't need much of an introduction to Celtic after keeping tabs on boyhood pal Jota becoming a hero at Parkhead.

That's not to say the on-loan Benfica midfielder hasn't still been taken aback by the size and stature of the Scottish Premiership champions, rather, he's acutely aware of the opportunity and pressure of playing for Celtic.

Having watched Jota go from relative unknown to being adorned on t-shirts for his iconic celebration at Celtic, Bernardo knows the bar for loan signings - particularly from Befica - in recent history is at a major high.

While Bernardo, 21, aspires to success and fan favour to the level of Jota he is clear he will be his own man at Celtic.

“He told me Celtic was a big club like our club Benfica," said Bernardo of his discussions with Jota ahead of his move to Glasgow. "He also told me the biggest difference is the weather here!

"We are friends. We talked a little bit before and after I came here. 

"He told me a lot of things that made me a little bit more comfortable here. 

“But I am really enjoying Glasgow, like he told me I would. I feel good here.

“I know he liked to wear old Celtic strips but he didn’t leave any for me!

“We are different personalities, we have different ways. I have known him since I was about six or seven, a long time ago.

“He is a little bit older than me so we were not friends as such, but I used to watch him playing for his team.

“It wasn’t until we got to the Benfica first team that we really got to know each other.

“When I was at Benfica and he was here, I used to check on my phone to see how he was doing. I kept seeing, ‘Jota scores again!’ 

“I’d look at the goals and it was great to see him doing so well.

“I know he was a really good player here and I want to show that I can be, I am too.

“I know he had a famous celebration that ended up being printed on t-shirts.

“I don’t have a certain celebration yet – but maybe I will!"

READ MORE: Brendan Rodgers on root of Reo Hatate's Celtic injury woes

Celtic enjoyed major success on the pitch through Jota's loan to permanent move - and a similar agreement with Benfica is in place for Bernardo should Brendan Rodgers deem the midfielder worth splashing out on.

Already, the player is confident he could extend his time at Celtic beyond his initial season-long loan.

Asked if he could see a future at Celtic, he said: “In the time I have, I had to show the manager more and more. I will get better.

"Could I stay? I think so. But I have to play a little more to have that chance."

And pressed on a possible spectacular return to Celtic for Jota - amid his struggle for minutes at Al-Ittihad - Bernardo added: “Maybe. I don’t know.”

Bernardo had to be patient for his first real opportunity at Celtic - as he had been warned by Rodgers - but the midfielder made an impression against Atletico Madrid in the Champions League after replacing injured Reo Hatate.

And the Portugal under-21 international is confident he can continue to make an impact at Celtic after his first couple of significant run-outs.

"Life for me since coming to Celtic had been nice," he said. "I like the city and the club. The club is really big. 

"I’ve had to be patient. All players want to play. But I have to work hard to get this chance. 

"And I have to work even harder to keep going and show the coach that I can play a lot more. 

"The coach has told me that I have to be patient as my opportunity will come. 

"He’s also told me to work as hard as I can and to be focused here.

"I felt ready when I was told to come on. I’m feeling confident. 

"I have to be ready and the opportunity came along. I did my best."