Report: Nir Bitton to leave Celtic this summer; midfielder speaks about his future
Celtic midfielder Nir Bitton will leave the club at the end of the season, Israeli broadcaster Sport 5 has reported.
The report is actually dated from the 25th of April after an interview with the Celtic veteran. So far the majority of English-speaking outlets have missed it.
Sport 5 say that after nine years Bitton will leave the Bhoys rather than have his contract extended. The exit will call time on an illustrious career at Celtic Park.
The imminent Scottish Premiership title win will confirm his status as the most-decorated Israeli footballer in history.
Long-serving midfielder speaks about his future
The news surfaced on our radar this weekend after Manchester-based newspaper The Jewish Telegraph re-reported the details in Friday’s edition.
They translated part of Bitton’s radio interview. The player suggested he is not yet ready to return to play in his homeland despite a Celtic exit.
The 30-year-old told Sport 5, as translated by The Jewish Telegraph: “I’m not at the stage where I want to return to Israel. I love Israel and Israeli football and I watch many games and I have a wish in the future to return to Israel.
“If there is a team in Israel who is showing interest and wants me very much then it might be difficult for me to refuse.”
The time is right for Nir Bitton to leave Celtic
He is now destined to say goodbye to Glasgow as Ange Postecoglou and the Bhoys move into the next phase of this exciting project.
The midfielder has made 37 appearances in total this term, 19 of which were starts. He’s been useful to have around.
The manager has praised Bitton on a number of occasions this season. However, some ruthless decisions have to be made to bring this team to the next level.
Postecoglou also brought defensively-minded midfielder Yosuke Ideguchi into the club in January, recently stating that the Japanese player will be a ‘strong contributor’ next season.
Bitton has had ups and downs at Celtic but his success cannot be denied. In general, he will be remembered fondly as a versatile squad player whose presence in the dressing room helped the club to many trophies over the last decade.
We’ll certainly be wishing him all the best when his exit is confirmed. Leaving on top sounds like the right call for everyone involved.