Celtic defender Jozo Simunovic will require surgery to clear up knee issue

By John McGinley

September 16, 2019

Celtic manager Neil Lennon has confirmed Jozo Simunovic will require surgery to help sort a knee problem that has kept him out of recent matches, speaking to Celtic TV.

The Croatian centre-back hasn’t played for the club since an August home match against AIK, despite being a regular in Lennon’s team prior to that.

Lennon told reporters last week that he was in line to see a specialist about the extent of his ongoing issues.

His Monday update has revealed the player is now set to face an extended spell on the sidelines.

As quoted by Celtic TV, the Hoops boss said: “Jozo is in for surgery.

“He’s going to have a clean out in the knee, an arthroscopy it’s called.”

The injury news didn’t stop there either, with Lennon also confirmed that Nir Bitton and Mikey Johnston will sit out the upcoming match away to Rennes.

No time-frame has been given on Simunovic’s return, but clearly it’s a situation that will develop and change based on the success of the procedure.

(Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Defensive problems again?

With Simunovic and Bitton both ruled out for upcoming matches, Celtic again are looking a little light in the central defensive area. Just Kristoffer Ajer and Christopher Jullien stand between the Hoops and something of a defensive crisis.

We’ll need to keep our fingers and toes crossed that neither player pick up any nasty knocks over the next few weeks. It’s important that both are fit and healthy to run a gauntlet of European and domestic matches.

Unfortunately for Simunovic these problems are nothing new and occasional knee injuries seem to have gone hand in hand with his progress at Celtic.

The hope will be that by undergoing surgery he can be a much more reliable talent in the long-term.