Celtic star Liel Abada can't hide disappointment at Israel U21 role

By Euan Davidson

March 24, 2022

Celtic and Israel man Liel Abada has confessed he’s disappointed with being in the U21s for the next round of fixtures.

With 5 caps to his name, and an astonishing 25 goal contributions (14 goals, 11 assists) this season for Celtic [Transfermarkt], you’d have thought Abada might be a key man for Willibald Ruttensteiner’s side. Instead, he’s being relied upon to set the tone for Israel’s U21 side.

He’ll be battling against Poland and Germany for a spot in the 2023 U21 Euros, whereas the senior squad have friendlies. However, Abada wants to add to his 5 caps, and quickly.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

He told ONE: “I was a little disappointed that I did not get a few more minutes in the senior team.

“But I respect the coach’s decision. I love Willie and [have a good] relationship with him. We have a good team and amazing people, the expectations are of course to win, if we win or lose it will not be because of one player or another.

“Poland? There is no such thing as a favourite. It’s 50/50. But it’s our home and our crowd and we’re coming to win, with the help of the name we’ll make a good result tomorrow. I think it’s a lot of fun to end up playing with the team. We have a good opportunity to qualify and hope we win tomorrow.”

Celtic star Liel Abada has every right to be disappointed, but he’s handling it well

If I had scored 14 goals and set up 11 more for a club the size of Celtic, I’d firstly be delighted I was playing for Celtic. Then, I’d be more than a bit miffed if my senior national team chose not to play me.

So, on that level, anyone can relate to Liel Abada’s feelings here. He’s been legitimately phenomenal. Of all the signings made by Ange Postecoglou for Celtic in 21-22, there’s a case for him being the best value. Weirdly, he’s a bit underrated in many respects.

Having put the game against Rangers to bed at Celtic Park, with a huge international audience, you might’ve thought that’d be enough.

Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

But fair play to Abada here. It doesn’t make him spoilt to say he’s a bit let down at the choice of the Israel manager. Nobody would begrudge him that. But he’s also stressed how excited he is about the U21s and their chance of qualifying for a tournament.

Both can be possible.

No doubt, we’ll see Abada’s 5 caps rise exponentially over the years. For now, he’s got to settle on the task at hand. We’re sure he’ll boss it.

Even against Poland and Germany sides full of talent.

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