Celtic manager Neil Lennon has revealed that Leigh Griffiths will unfortunately sit out tomorrow night’s clash against Sparta Prague.
The Hoops will take on the Czech side in what’s a do-or-die Europa League contest. Should Celtic suffer defeat then they will officially be knocked out of the competition. Only a win will keep them alive for now.
Celtic go into the contest having had a host of injury concerns over the last month-and-a-half to contend with. The likes of Odsonne Edouard, Ryan Christie, James Forrest, Nir Biton, and Hatem Elhamed have all missed out on crucial fixtures for the club in recent times.
And tomorrow night it’ll be Griffiths’ turn to sit out with a fresh knock despite featuring for 20 minutes or so at Easter Road on Saturday. Fortunately, however, the injury should only last a couple of days, with a return date against Ross County seeming like a possibility.
💬 NL: “Griffiths is out with a knee problem but should be ok over the next few days. Jullien and Elhamed are in contention to start.”
More from the manager on YouTube soon 💻
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) November 25, 2020
Edouard and Griff showed signs of promise
Celtic only really came alive against Hibs last Saturday after Griffiths and Edouard came on and played as a partnership. Therefore, it’s a blow that Leigh will be missing in what will be the last-chance saloon for us in Prague tomorrow.
In saying that of course, Lennon likely would’ve started Griffiths on the bench regardless. He’s seldom started the former Wolves striker this season, and it still looked as though he would start Edouard tomorrow night even if Griff was fit.
But it’s still frustrating. Griffiths has shown in cameos against the likes of Aberdeen and Hibernian in recent weeks that he can be a game-changer. In fact, against Prague several weeks ago, he was the only one who looked capable of making an impression after coming on from the bench. He ended up scoring on the night too.
He’s been such an influential figure from the bench this season, but it’s also key that Celtic don’t take any risks with him. We need to get him back up to full fitness somehow, even if he is going to be a slow-burner. Albian Ajeti and Patryk Klimala are also available if necessary.
It is, however, promising to see both Chris Jullien and Hatem Elhamed in contention to start. It looks as though Lennon is going to have plenty of power in his side tomorow evening, and that could be key to a good result.
Hopefully Griff is back firing and ready before our Betfred Cup match at home to County on Sunday.
In other news, it appears that what happened several weeks ago has fired up this one Celtic star at least.