The likely Celtic course of action as Asian Cup issue arises

By Hamish Carton

March 1, 2023

Celtic could be without as many as seven players next January due to the Asian Cup.

Dates for the tournament in Qatar have today been confirmed, with the competition set to take place between January 12 and February 10.

Scottish football will be on a winter break from January 3-19 (SPFL) but Celtic could still be missing some big players on their return.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

At present, Kyogo Furuhashi, Reo Hatate and Daizen Maeda are realistic picks for Japan, while Tomoki Iwata and Yuki Kobayashi could also stake a claim.

Aaron Mooy is almost certain to be picked for Australia while Hyeongyu Oh is in the reckoning for South Korea too.

Under SPFL rules, we will be entitled to “apply to the Board for the postponement of any Official Match where three or more player” are unavailable through international selection.” (Rule G7)

Last year, when a similar issue presented itself, Ange Postecoglou was very clear that Celtic would get on with things.

With some players set to miss key games against Hearts and Rangers, he said: “We’ll plan as we always have, that when we lose players to international duty we’ll crack on and play the games we need to play.

Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

“At the moment, there’s no point even thinking about that. As it stands, none of the players have been selected, so until that happens we’ll look at it then.” (Football Scotland)

Of course, this is an issue we don’t have to worry about right now. Ange will be aware of it but won’t be wasting time thinking about what to do.

But he has built a immense squad at Celtic for a reason, so we always have options even when several players are missing.

Let’s pick this one back up at a later date.

In other news, the verdict as Ange Postecoglou commits to year three at Celtic