Davie Provan has hailed the ability and improvement in Celtic defender and loan star Jack Hendry whilst away from Parkhead.
Hendry has spent the entire campaign in Belgium with KV Oostende. It’s been an extremely worthwhile exercise for him too, making 16 appearances and bagging two goals (Transfermarkt).
His form has been electric in Belgium, and that’s hugely impressive considering his situation at Parkhead back in the summer. Hendry hadn’t played once for Neil Lennon and was something of a joke figure amongst the support. Now, he’s had them debating whether he should be brought back.
That unfortunately isn’t a route Celtic could go down even if we wanted to (Daily Record). But Provan believes there’s been plenty of improvement in the Scotland internationl, and he believes he should be considered for Euro 2020 participation.
Speaking in the Scottish Sun, Provan said: “Saw footage of Celtic’s Jack Hendry playing on loan at KV Oostende recently. Where he was lightweight when signing for Brendan Rodgers, he’s added half a stone of muscle to look like a proper centre-back
“Wolves are among a number of clubs known to be interested in him and so too should Scotland boss Steve Clarke. We don’t have many defenders with the distribution of Hendry.
“Celts could do with him in their current emergency but there was no release clause in the deal. Oops.”
Provan clearly likes loan star Hendry; but Celtic right to send him out
Hindsight is a wonderful thing. That’s the saying that comes to mind when analysing this particular talking point.
Back in the summer, Provan would’ve been the first to laugh at the idea of Celtic playing Hendry regularly. He had made a host of positional errors and clumsy mistakes with his distribution under Brendan Rodgers. It was no wonder Celtic were looking to shift him out elsewhere.
This is sometimes forgotten about, but the whole reason for sending players on loan is so they can receive game-time. That’s what Hendry’s been given and he’s managed to improve. Brilliant, that’s exactly what Celtic wanted and you have to consider it a successful decision to therefore loan him out in the first place.
It’s also a bit poor to suggest that playing for KV Oostende and Celtic represent similar challenges. Just because Hendry is thriving in Belgium doesn’t mean he would be able to produce the same consistency in Glasgow. Not with the massive pressure that comes with playing for Celtic. Would Hendry be tearing it up in the current environment here? That’s doubtful, to say the least.
Hendry’s contract at Parkhead only has another 12 months to go beyond the end of the season. His impressive performances on loan will help the club sell him for a decent fee. Tat’s likely what was on Lennon’s mind when sending him out.
So it’s unfair to accuse the club of making some sort of catastrophic decision on Hendry. He needed game-time in the summer and it was offered to him. Nobody was complaining about this deal before the season began.