Celtic can't just forget about the talented Ewan Henderson

By David Walton

December 18, 2020

You can call this premature, but I personally don’t like how Celtic talent Ewan Henderson has suddenly stopped being spoken about.

Henderson was one of the main success stories against Lille a week ago. He had to come on after only 30 minutes against the Ligue 1 leaders. Playing down the right ahead of Kris Ajer, Ewan was superb.

Stat experts WhoScored gave him a ranking of 6.82/10 for his display. This was considerably higher than any of our substitutes as well as four first-team starters.

Henderson was one of the names who was given a pat on the back. He came in and did a superb job getting Celtic up the pitch and linking the play. The fact he had the joint-highest number of dribbles in the game out of any Celtic player is a testament to his display.

Yet for the 2-0 win against Kilmarnock on Sunday, Henderson was dropped. Not just to the bench either, but out of the squad entirely. Not really the reward he deserved for his fine Lille outing.

Remember, last week we expressed our views on why Henderson needs to head out on loan. That remains the case in my view. His chances at Celtic are going to be limited. He has to lift planets to get a regular run in this team.

Henderson still needs to leave Celtic in January

I was personally disappointed to see him dropped totally for Killie’s visit. I do get it of course. Ryan Christie was back and had to come back into the squad. But it’s important Henderson isn’t just forgotten about.

He absolutely bossed it and in a game that meant so much to Lille. A Lille side sitting above PSG at the top of Ligue 1. We’ve already spoken about how the result was more special than it will be remembered for, and Henderson’s performance can be labelled similar.

However, and this isn’t something Neil Lennon should be criticised too harshly for, there’s no route there for Ewan just now. That’s becoming evidently clear. It was a massive surprise just to see him feature against Lille.

Celtic youngster Ewan Henderson bossed it vs Lille (Photo by Craig Williamson/SNS Group via Getty Images)

You’ll do well to predict where the next opportunity is going to come from for him.

When January rolls around, it’s absolutely essential Hendo gets a temporary move elsewhere. He’s far too talented to sit there on anyone’s bench. If he can progress elsewhere at first-team level, it bolsters him. It gives him a more realistic chance of competing for a Celtic first-team spot next season.

It’s disappointing that Henderson won’t be considered much this season. Perhaps it’s a necessary evil of the 10-in-a-row season. Even so, he can’t just be left there. It’s time to get him a move if he’s going to just drop back down to the development squad.

In other news, a Sky Sports pundit has outlined Lennon’s five big fan-pleasing Celtic decisions.