Celtic seemed to be emerging from a series of injuries with players returning to training and the squad, and things were looking up for Ange Postecoglou’s side, who had built up some serious momentum in recent weeks. The last two matches have given rise to new problems though, which the Hoops need to solve as soon as possible.
Tom Rogic had to be brought against Hibernian last midweek and appears to be out for two to three weeks at least with a hamstring injury. That was followed by Carl Starfelt limping off just before the hour mark against Livingston at the weekend. Again, it looks to be hamstring related problem and we will have to wait and see how long the Swedish defender could miss.
That creates a selection problem in defence for Ange Postecoglou over the coming weeks. Though he is in a much better place than earlier in the season given the form and availability of Cameron Carter-Vickers, the Hoops’ backline depth is still not very deep.
With Christopher Jullien back in training now but not available yet, the gap at centre-back looks likely to be filled by either Stephen Welsh or Nir Bitton, with Liam Scales possibly being an alternative option.
Who could step in for Celtic during Starfelt’s absence?
Starfelt’s absence certainly leaves Celtic with a bit of a selection dilemma. Both Welsh and Carter-Vickers have been more settled on the right hand side of the centre-back pairing.
Scales was signed for his ability to play at left back or on the left-side of a centre-back pairing. He has not played much since arriving at Parkhead though and it feels unlikely that he would be given a start immediately in Starfelt’s place.
Bitton has featured in more games recently but in midfield providing an alternative for the absent James McCarthy. He could be another contender to play in defence.
It is safe to say that Postecoglou needs to find the right solution before the game against Ferencvaros.
This article was originally posted here