Celtic once tried to sign PSV ace Eran Zahavi, says Neil Lennon

By Hamish Carton

October 8, 2021

Former Celtic boss Neil Lennon says the club once tried to sign Israel goal machine Eran Zahavi.

The 34-year-old attacker has been in prolific form for his country and club side PSV Eindhoven in recent seasons.

Zahavi struck 17 goals for the Eredivisie side last season and has five in his last three for Israel too.

He’s also been a constant thorn in the side of Scotland in recent years, netting two goals and setting up many more against Steve Clarke’s men.

Photo by JACK GUEZ/AFP via Getty Images

He has enjoyed a remarkable goalscoring career – netting over 100 goals for both Maccabi Tel Aviv and Guangzhou City.

But Lennon says he could have become a Celtic player at one stage.

Asked by Israeli outlet Sport 5 about Israeli players he had tried to sign, Lennon said:

“Eran Zahavi was one of them at the time, I really liked him.

“He is a good striker, an icon, influences the other members of the team, but we never managed to reach an agreement with him.

“When I coached Hibernian I watched the game between Celtic and Salzburg, and Munas Dabbur played up front and I thought he was good. I really like him as a player.

“I have not yet seen enough Manor Solomon games for me to have a real opinion, but I like the team’s right back Eli Dasa.”

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67 Hail Hail (Youtube)

Zahavi could easily have ended up at Celtic

It is hardly a surprise that Lennon and Celtic were intrigued by the prospect of signing Zahavi.

Celtic have had a strong connection to Israel over the past decade with the likes of Beram Kayal, Nir Bitton, Efe Ambrose and most recently Liel Abada all arriving from the country.

Not all have been huge successes, but you can’t deny that they’ve been memorable.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Of course, links with Israeli agent Dudu Dahan are the main reason for the trend.

Let’s hope Liel Abada is the next star to come out of the country.

And that he becomes that star while playing for Celtic.

In other news, Celtic’s Tom Rogic helped Australia break a world record on Thursday