Celtic have said they are 'appalled' by historic child abuse, and they are 'very sorry' it ever took place.

It said it wanted to reiterate its "sincere sympathy, regret and sorrow for those affected".

It comes two days after a sixth Celtic Boys' club coach was understood to be at the centre of new child abuse claims.

A statement is understood to have been given under oath – by a man now in his late 50s describing how he was repeatedly abused by a man in the early 70s.

In the sworn statement, the man says he was abused at Barrowfield, the then training ground of Celtic FC, when he was 10 or 11.

Four men associated with Celtic or the boys' club  – including Jim Torbett and Frank Cairney – were convicted of historical sex abuse against children.  There are allegations standing against a fifth.

READ MORE: Celtic express ‘regret and sorrow over child abuse’  

The Parkhead side has previously expressed regret for the victims but has insisted they are not legally responsible as the boys club was a separate organisation.

The club has now issued its new apology and accepted the historic contacts with the boys' club.

"In light of recent speculation and to seek to avoid any confusion, the club wishes to confirm its position regarding the historic abuse that took place at Celtic Football club and Celtic Boys’ club," said the club.

The Herald:

"Celtic Football club is appalled by any form of historic abuse and has great sympathy for those who suffered abuse and for their families. The club is very sorry that these events took place. The abuse of young people is an abhorrent crime. Unfortunately it has affected many areas of society. 

"With regard to the allegations regarding historic abuse at Celtic Boys’ club (which, so far as we have been made aware, relate to the period prior to 1997), although Celtic Football club is a separate organisation, we take these extremely seriously because of the historic contacts between the two organisations. 

"Police investigations were given support, so as to seek to ensure that those individuals who abused young people were brought to justice."

Cairney was jailed for four years after being convicted of nine charges of molesting young boys at football clubs he ran between 1965 and 1986.  

He was found to have abused the teens while running St Columba's Boys Guild in Viewpark, Lanarkshire, and the under-16s team at Celtic Boys Club.

Cairney joined Celtic Boys Club in 1971 after being asked to run the youth side by legendary manager Jock Stein.

The Herald:

In November, 2018 Boys Club founder Jim Torbett (above) was jailed for six years, after being convicted of sexually abusing three boys over an eight-year period. His victims included youth players Kenny Campbell and Andrew Gray, who had waived their right to anonymity.

Another coach, and former Celtic Boys Club chairman, Gerald King, was convicted in December, 2018, of abusing boys at a school and was given a three-year probation order.

Celtic added: "The club has been at the leading edge in Scottish football of putting welfare and safeguarding protections in place for our young people and continues to work with Scottish football to make it a safe place for young people.

"These are very sensitive matters. There are ongoing legal proceedings which prevent us from discussing any case in any detail. It would not be appropriate for the club to comment in the media about any individuals or events. 

"In summary, these are historic issues, which the club is dealing with in a responsible manner and in conjunction with its advisers. The club reiterates its sincere sympathy, regret and sorrow for those affected. As we have said repeatedly, the club will stand by its responsibilities, respecting the due process of law."

In response to the latest alleged case, Police Scotland said any allegation of abuse will be "fully investigated" and encouraged anyone with any concerns around historic abuse to report them to the police.

Celtic Boys' Club was founded by Torbett in 1966 with the permission of the then Celtic FC manager, the late Jock Stein and former chairman Sir Robert Kelly.

It was created as a separate entity from the football club, but it has been closely linked throughout its history and acted as a feeder club, producing a string of Celtic players including Roy Aitken, Paul McStay and Tommy Burns.

Torbett was jailed for two years in 1998 on conviction of abusing three former Celtic Boys' Club players, including former Scotland international Alan Brazil, between 1967-74.