International Round Up

From a Celtic perspective, the most important thing about the international break is that our players come back from it unscathed and ready to go in the next round of league fixtures. With 9 games to play, a 9 point lead to defend, and two Glasgow Derby’s still to play, Celtic will need to be at full strength going into the next month.

However, a string of injuries picked up or aggravated on the current international break means that that is unlikely to happen.  With up to 9 players carrying knocks, Celtic may need to utilise the full depth of their first team squad in the coming weeks.

Nine seems to be a recurring number within this article and so it was that nine of Celtic’s first-team squad were called up for international duty last week.


Liel Abada was the first to leave his national team camp with a ‘minor quad injury’ ahead of Israel’s games against Kosovo and Switzerland.  The much talked about winger has since been joined by Daizen Maeda and Anthony Ralston in returning to Celtic Park ahead of schedule for treatment on injuries.

The fitness of Montenegrin forward Sead Hakšabanović is also in doubt after he was subbed off at half-time in Friday’s 1-0 win over Bulgaria.  No confirmation has been made public if this was due to injury, and we will need to wait to see if he takes part in Monday’s game against Serbia for further clarity.

With Abada, Maeda, and Hakšabanović all potentially facing time on the side lines alongside the crocked James Forrest, Celtic are looking a little light on the wings heading into Sunday’s game at Ross County.

At the current time, Jota is the only fully fit winger in the first-team squad.  Should none of Abada, Maeda, or Hakšabanović be deemed fit to play on Sunday, we may yet see a start for young Rocco Vata or even Ben Summers.


Callum McGregor collected his 50th cap for Scotland on Saturday as he played his part in a routine 3-0 win over Cyprus; Carl Starfelt was an unused sub as Sweden slumped to defeat against Belgium, as was Conor Hazard for Northern Ireland in their games against San Marino and Finland.

Oh was given the final 30 minutes for South Korea against Colombia on Thursday, replacing former Celtic target Cho Gue-Sung in the 2-2 draw. Alistair Johnston, on the other hand was left out of Canada’s matchday squad for their game against Curacao.

None of Abada, Maeda, or Ralston made it on to the pitch for their respective nations before leaving the national team camps, and Sead Hakšabanović has so far played 45 minutes for Montenegro with doubts surrounding his fitness.

The international break runs until Tuesday and we can only hope that the remaining Celts left on international duty return home injury free and do not add further to the ongoing injury concerns.

Going into the break, Hatate, Mooy, Taylor, and Carter-Vickers had all booked time on the treatment table at Lennoxtown . With Abada, Maeda, and Ralston now also returning with injuries the medical staff will have their work cut out for them.



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