Former Celtic loanee Daniel Arzani is forgetting his Bhoys woes

By Euan Davidson

September 7, 2021

Daniel Arzani is an Australian international, and is contracted to Manchester City, one of the biggest clubs in world football.

Yet, when the tricky winger was on loan at Celtic for two years, Arzani was bogged down by constant injury woes. Brought in during the 18-19 campaign, it ought to have been a free shot for development. Given Arzani’s age and abilities at the time, it seemed a good deal.

Playing attacking football under Brendan Rodgers, representing the Socceroos and winning trophies. That should’ve been what happened.

Instead, he only played twice in his first season, after rupturing his cruciate ligament, and missed 82 games [Transfermarkt]. In his second season, the 19-20 campaign, Arzani didn’t see a minute of league action for Celtic.

That’s essentially two years, just written off. For most players, it would’ve been a significant blow, one it’s hard to ever come back from. He came to a club in one of its most successful eras, in a position where he was needed. The fact it went so wrong is nobody’s fault, but how frustrating it was.

Former Celtic loanee Daniel Arzani – comeback kid?

Now, though, Arzani is in the Australia squad. He’s starting to play regular club football with regularity with Lommel SK. Not only that, he’s being backed by his international manager.

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Graham Arnold has confidence the ex-Bhoys winger can bounce back, and in some style [Guardian]:

“He’s such a great kid, such a beautiful kid that I’m just here to support him and support the rest of the players.

“Obviously I’ve had a lot of life experiences in football and just trying to help the kid get back on track.

“We have a lot of conversations, he knows I’m here to support him in his career and, again, what’s important for me is that he fulfils his potential. He’s still got time to do that. The kid’s only 21-22. He’s had a tough last couple of years but I’m 100% sure the kid will bounce back and get that career back on track.”

Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

It’s a bitter shame that Arzani never got his chance at Celtic. Certainly, the club were willing. The panic for attacking players showed that Arzani had been in the reckoning before his injury. Winter loan deals for Timothy Weah and Oli Burke emphasised a lack of depth.

Having featured in the Olympics, Arzani’s next possible Australia appearance could be today against Vietnam [Socceroos]. If he features, he could be alongside his former Celtic teammate, Tom Rogic.

Read more: Nir Bitton continues to impress for Israel – so why not Celtic?