Celtic haven’t been shy in letting players leave on loan in the current transfer window. The most recent to depart the club is Jonathan Afolabi, who has moved to Dundee on loan for the rest of the season. Recently Scott Robertson joined Gillingham on loan.
However, that should not be the end of Celtic’s loan moves before the transfer window slams shut. Here we identify three players at Celtic who would benefit for a loan move for a number of reasons.
Henderson is a bit unfortunate, as he has performed well on the rare occasions that he has featured in the Hoops first-team. However, those occasions have been few and far between, as he is a central midfielder, and that is arguably the strongest area of the Celtic team.
Henderson spent the first-half of last season on loan at Ross County, and a similar move to a bottom six Premiership side could give Henderson the regular football he will be looking for. A move to a team like St Johnstone could kickstart both their season and the player’s career, which at the age of 20, still has a long way to go, and will hopefully include a long spell in the Hoops. St Johnstone are in a bit of a rut at the moment, Henderson is more than capable of leading them out of that.
Stephen Welsh has only played one first-team game for Celtic – the 4-1 win over Hamilton last season. He turned in a composed performance at centre-back. He hasn’t featured since then, and the arrival of Shane Duffy could limit his chances even more.
Therefore, a loan move away for Welsh seems like the smart move. He has played in the Championship before – for Morton, perhaps a move to a team higher up the league – Inverness or Dundee, for example – could provide Welsh with the regular test that he needs. He has shown he can play for the Hoops, but the Championship will provide a stern test, that will do the player good. At only 20, he could have a bright future at Celtic, but it might not be for a while yet.
When Luca Connell signed for Celtic last summer, he had been a regular in the Championship for Bolton. Alas, he has not yet made that step-up with Celtic. The player almost moved on loan last January, a move Neil Lennon told the Scottish Sun would be good for the player.
It didn’t happen. However, now is the time for Connell, who is 19 to get some regular football under his belt. A move to a Championship or League One side in England could be just the ticket for Connell. The defensive midfielder could thrive in that tough league. By the time he returns to the club, he could be one of the candidates to eventually take over from Scott Brown in the Celtic side.
In other news, Leigh Griffiths could feature for Celtic against Sarajevo.