One of Celtic’s most important players – Kristoffer Ajer – is currently out of action with a groin injury he suffered in the Hoops’ 4-1 win over AIK in the Europa League play-off.

The injury meant that the centre-back missed the Hoops’ recent Glasgow derby win. However, manager Neil Lennon recently revealed that Ajer could be back in action for the first game after the winter break, against Hamilton.

Having Ajer back so soon would undeniably be a bonus for the Hoops. Ajer has been one of Celtic’s best players both this season, and the majority of last season.

Playing on artificial surface could be a gamble

(Photo by Alan Rennie/Action Plus via Getty Images)

However, there is no need to rush the player back in time to play Hamilton. Playing on the artificial surface just after recovering from injury could be a gamble.

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If Ajer has recovered from injury in time for Hamilton, the best thing to do is to keep him on the bench. Then he can start in the Europa League trip to Rennes on the following Thursday.

The Hoops may have some injuries in defence, but Christopher Jullien and Hatem Abd Elhamed can play at centre-back against Hamilton if need be.

 

Elhamed looked comfortable at centre-back in the recent win over Rangers. Whilst Jullien has come into his own in recent weeks.

Hoops set for very busy schedule

(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

The Hamilton game will mark the beginning of a very busy schedule for Celtic between September and the winter break in December.

The Hoops will be in action most midweeks, in league games, the Betfred Cup and the Europa League group stages.

Neil Lennon will want as many of his players to be available for those games as possible. That is why Ajer should not be risked for Hamilton.

With Jozo Simunovic and Nir Bitton out for a while, the Hoops will not want Ajer to aggravate the groin problem he has been suffering from. It is better to wait, even if that means he misses a game.

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