Three returning players who deserve a first team chance next season


For a club like Celtic it is important to win every game and there are no exceptions so it is difficult for young players to win a chance.

A loan is usually a good opportunity to play regularly and impress before returning to the club, but it’s also easy to get overlooked if they travel to another country where we don’t see them in action too often.

It’s likely that the Celtic squad will be undergoing a major overhaul next year and some big names can come and go, but there should still be chances for young players to impress.

Here’s a look at three loan players who will be returning this summer who deserve at least a chance to claim a pre-season claim.

Jack Hendry – CB- Ostend

It looked like his loan transfer to Belgium was just a step to put him in the showcase ahead of a final release, but he was truly impressive and a decision will have to be made.

It was recently confirmed by President of Ostend that they wanted to sign a permanent deal with Hendry, but he still refrains from accepting that as he seeks to weigh his options.

The problem will be winning over the fans after he looks far from impressive during his time with Celtic, but as always – good management is putting your player in the best position to be successful.

If Celtic try to use him as a versatile defender who is going to take the ball and dictate the game then it will obviously be a disaster, but use it for his strength as a physical ball winner next to a more player. cultivated. like Ajer and suddenly we could have a good partnership in our hands.

The problems will come when other teams will simply allow him to have the ball before cutting off passing lanes, so it’s important to bring players closer to him and give him options so that doesn’t happen.

We’ve seen so many players impress on a loan and suddenly it’s their making as they develop and learn what they can do well so it might be worth sticking around s ‘there is a plan to use it properly.

Lee O’Connor – Tranmere Rovers – LB / CB / RB

He was incredibly highly rated at Old Trafford so it felt like a coup when Celtic first took him on, but there was no room for him in the squad, so a loan was the right option.

You have to worry that his versatility gets in his way when it comes to locking down a regular role and he could get caught in that awkward spot of not being dominant enough as a CB but also not having the ball skills to. play like a real wing. back.

Celtic will need to get stronger from next season as Anthony Ralston appears to be the only choice, and O’Connor could be a second choice for a more experienced player if he gives him a chance.

He will have to improve in the future, but he is a good defender who is also solid on the ball, so there will be a chance to play him in a more defensive role and that allows the left-back to get back on his feet. and to overload on this side.

While three in the back is still a regular feature, he’s also well suited for that role as RCB, and it would be nice to see him have a good chance next year.

Scott Robertson – Central Midfield – Gillingham / Doncaster Rovers

Celtic will have plenty of options at the center of the park next year as it is, but you have to wonder if everyone will still be there when the season kicks off.

Scott Brown has reached this point where he’s a year-to-year proposition so you should expect his playing time to start to decrease, Tom Rogic and Ryan Christie are often linked with an outing, Olivier Ntcham is on loan and maybe not. return, while Nir Bitton is often at the edge of the team and he could also want a change.

There’s still a core of McGregor, Turnbull, and Soro to build on and it could be a solid three, but Robertson would be an interesting piece to add.

He was particularly impressive on loan with Gillingham in the first half of the season, with Steve Evans speaking to the club website how much he enjoys watching Robertson play.

He’s more defensive, but he’s not necessarily a typical midfielder – he’s got a lot of energy and he enjoys taking the ball and playing progressive passes so there’s a lot to admire in his game.

It looked like he would even have a chance with the first team this year, as he was recalled from that loan in January, but he has since been loaned to Doncaster again.

He’s similar to Ewan Henderson in that he’s good enough to deserve a few first-team chances, but it’s easy to see signings coming in and the other big names on the squad limiting their opportunities, so another loan would be. the best thing in this situation.

If there is some turnover he deserves a chance to play in the preseason and you know the fans will always welcome a local kid who has been through the youth system and needs to be considered as well.

Robertson in action for Gillingham

With all three, it is possible that it will depend on a change in leadership and the club appointing a manager who wants to start over and has no preconceptions about the current squad.

We often see new bosses prioritizing the freshness and energy that young players bring and using them would also reduce the need for three more signings, allowing the club to focus on quality over quantity in the market. transfers.