Daniel Arzani’s injury problems are hopefully now a thing of the past after a big step forward today.
The Australian winger injured his ACL back on Halloween 2018. He’s been out of action ever since, but has been picking up his training regime over the course of the summer.
And finally, he’s managed to get some minutes on the pitch today for a Celtic XI against Hibernian. Arzani came on for the final half-hour against Hibs in a 1-1 draw at Lennoxton.
The Aussie replaced Liam Burt, and clearly got stuck in too. He came on and set up Armstrong Oko-Flex for a chance on 68 minutes. Arzani then had two long-range pops from distance that came close. He certainly sounded keen to impress if his performance was anything to go by.
And now, he can surely start looking at where he fits into this current Celtic squad. When you look at the team he’s trying to break into, competition is fierce for the Australia internationalist.
Will Arzani be given the chances Lewis Morgan has had?
It’s a difficult one for Arzani. He’s not just walking into a back-up position where he can start putting some pressure on the main left-mid. Instead, he’s going to be thrown into a royal rumble-type set-up, with so many competing for the one spot.
However, Neil Lennon has been shown to rotate in that particular position often this season. Mikey Johnston, Mohamed Elyounoussi, Lewis Morgan, and Scott Sinclair have all played down the left so far this term. It’s clear to see that Lennon is open to giving players opportunities.
But Morgan and Sinclair in particular haven’t impressed this season. Sinky perhaps hasn’t had many chances (he’s only made four appearances this term), but he’s performed poorly over the last six months.
Arzani also has a potential advantage in that he was impressive at Dens Park before his injury. Even though we didn’t see him for longer than 20 minutes, he showed real flashes of brilliance. His performance at Lennoxtown today also suggests he was lively when he came on.
Fans will surely want to catch a glimpse of what he can offer. If Morgan is still getting chances to impress, then surely the same should be done for Arzani when he’s truly ready to go.
The Aussie is only here until the end of the season. But that’s no different to Elyounoussi and Sinclair respectively. If he’s good enough, he’ll get his chance. It’s just down to him to take it.