Have Yang & Palma leapfrogged Abada in the pecking order?

Celtic have had to deal with a vast injury list this season, leaving Brendan Rodgers somewhat hampered in his efforts to really make a full assessment of his Celtic squad.

The one silver lining for Rodgers has been the emergence of some of the backups and new signings who have been tasked with stepping up to replace injured first-team regulars.

In the absence of Cameron Carter-Vickers, it was Liam Scales who became an unexpected star of the early season. Meanwhile, with Liel Abada out, Luis Palma has quickly become one of the first names on the team-sheet at Celtic.

Israeli winger, Liel Abada, has been on the sidelines since early September and is not expected back until after Christmas at the latest.

Given that for almost two seasons straight, Abada was a consistent fixture amongst the Celtic squad, does the 22-year-old immediately return to the starting XI upon his recovery from injury or will he find it difficult to re-establish himself in the hoops?

The Yang and Palma factor

In an effort to replace Jota following his move to Al-Ittihad, Celtic signed three wingers in the summer. The three new arrivals have provided varying results, but it has undoubtedly been Luis Palma and Yang Hyun-jun who have been most impressive.

The form of these two players may cause some problems for Daizen Maeda and Liel Abada upon their return from injury, as they have a few more weeks to impress the gaffer and staple down their first-team spots.

Celtic could use some healthy competition in the forward areas and it looks like Yang and Palma are going to provide just that as they look to make the most of their starting roles.

Luis Palma has been in flying form, grabbing nine goal contributions in his eight league appearances so far and he looks the most likely to prevent Abada from regaining that starting role.

Yang Hyun-jun had a slow start to the season but he looks to be finally coming onto a game in a Celtic shirt, impressing in his last two starts in the league against Ross County and Aberdeen respectively, even grabbing his first Celtic goal in the 6-0 demolition of the Dons.

If the South Korean and the Honduran can continue on their current trajectory, then it will be easier said than done for the Israeli to regain the  starting role he lost when he picked up that injury.


How did Abada start the season?

There were a lot of high expectations for Abada to set the world alight under Brendan Rodgers this season. He possesses a lot of the necessary qualities that makes a successful winger under the manager, with his finishing and pace all being key aspects of his game.

Even when not at his best, he would still pop up with a goal, much like a certain Scott Sinclair in Rodgers’ first tenure as Celtic boss.

In the early stages of this season, however, the Israeli was satisfactory and nothing more.

When he does return from injury, he will have to work extremely hard to not only get back to full fitness and match sharpness, but to also attempt to displace Luis Palma and Yang Hyun-jun who only look like improving as the weeks go on.


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