New Serie A star Liam Henderson has previously admitted that he could be open to a Scotland return one day.
The former Celtic man has just achieved promotion to Italy’s top flight with Hellas Verona. A dramatic play-off final win over Cittadella, in which Verona came from 2-0 down to win 3-2, sees Henderson make the biggest step of his career.
And it’s a deserved break for the youngster too. Henderson has shown real ambition and courage to move to Italy in a bid to get his career going again. His initial move to Bari ended when the club went bankrupt, but the Verona switch has been a godsend for Hendo.
But could he one day return to Celtic Park if the timing was right for both clubs? Henderson spoke to the 90 Minute Cynic podcast just three months ago about that and his thoughts on Neil Lennon.
“The manager was Neil Lennon, who was incredible for me, genuinely. I don’t have a bad word to say about the gaffer and honestly I am forever in his debt.
“He’s a top manager, he’s won already league titles with Celtic and I’m sure he’ll continue to give his best until the end of the season and then obviously that’s the choice to make for the board, but I would say aye, Lennon is a top man.
“The option of Italy came up and I was like ‘right, I’m going for this, it might not come again’. I can always come back home. Not being big-headed, I’m not saying come back to Celtic, I’m just saying back home in general to whoever it may be.”
Henderson and Celtic is a future reunion in the making
Henderson departed Parkhead after failing to breakthrough consistently under Brendan Rodgers. He managed 37 appearances for the Hoops overall, but it was clear he had reached the glass ceiling.
Henderson, as he was at the time, just wasn’t going to play regularly over Callum McGregor, Scott Brown, Tom Rogic and co. Making the leap to Italy was a big step, but he’s playing on a weekly basis and can now do so against Italy’s top footballing outfits.
Trips to the San Siro and the Allianz Stadium now await Hendo, but the ingredients are all there for a Celtic return one day too. He and Lennon clearly have a good relationship with each other. Henderson also left the door open to a return back to Scotland in the future.
It all depends on how Henderson comes on as a player over time. Can he improve his technique, goal threat, and ability to control the midfield? If so, he’ll be some player, and could be worth looking into in the future.
But for now, he’ll be looking forward to his future in Italy, as he gets set to rub shoulders with Cristiano Ronaldo next season.