Celtic manager Neil Lennon has decided on his UEFA Europa League squad for the upcoming group stage campaign, as per UEFA.com.
While every key star has of course been included, alongside others such as Scott Sinclair and Marian Shved, it’s a disappointing day for a few.
Eboue Kouassi, Daniel Arzani, Jack Hendry and Luca Connell have all missed out.
While their exclusion is as much of a numbers game as any judgement of their ability, it’s clear that none of the foursome are particularly close to regular first-team action at the Hoops.
Kouassi spent the majority of the 2018/19 season recovering from a long-term knee injury but has recently returned to training. He has made European performances for the team under Brendan Rodgers. Despite defensive midfield cover needed for Scott Brown, Lennon has made the difficult decision to exclude him this time around.
The status of Arzani is something of a mystery. Like Kouassi, he missed the majority of last term through injury. Although technically on loan at Celtic until the end of this season, it seems unlikely he’ll be making a big impact before returning to Manchester City.
Hendry meanwhile has not been near the Celtic team since Lennon took charge. It’ll be a surprising turn of events if he plays for the club again given the defensive options being used ahead of him.
Connell probably has the most hope of breaking into the first-team over the next 12 months having just been signed by the club during the summer transfer window. A highly-rated pick up from Bolton Wanderers, he’ll be hoping to get some domestic action under his belt before long.
Elsewhere in the European squad it’s as you’d expect. The inclusion of Odsonne Edouard on the ‘B List’ for the first time has freed up a bit of extra space on the main list, which is a bonus.
All of Lennon’s first-team summer signings, aside from Connell, have made the squad.
The full list of players is:
Craig Gordon, Scott Bain, Fraser Forster, Ryan Mullen*, Conor Hazard*
Christopher Jullien, Greg Taylor, Jozo Simunovic, Moritz Bauer, Boli Bolingoli, Hatem Abd Elhamed, Kris Ajer*, Nir Bitton, Kerr McInroy*
Scott Brown, Scott Sinclair, Lewis Morgan, Tom Rogic, Olivier Ntcham, Barry Coffey*, Scott Robertson*, Callum McGregor, James Forrest, Paul Kennedy*, Mark Hill*, David McKay*, Jonny Hayes, Ryan Christie, Michael Johnston*, Mohamed Elyounoussi, Marian Shved, Karamoko Dembele*
Leigh Griffiths, Vakoun Issouf Bayo, Odsonne Edouard*, Calvin Miller*, Grant Savoury*
(* Player list B)