According to the latest reports from the Scottish Sun, Celtic have cancelled their much-publicised trial for Premier League winner Danny Simpson after the signing of Hatem Abd Elhamed looks set to be completed. The English right-back is currently a free agent, and it was reported that the 32-year-old would undergo a trial at Parkhead.
However, it is believed that Simpson was not ready to be an understudy at Celtic and that was one of the primary reasons why the trial has been put off. The former Manchester United player managed to make just three starts in the Premier League last season, and his search for a new club is likely to stretch on further.
Right call by Celtic?
Simpson is way past his prime. Even though he has plenty of experience of playing in the Premier League, we think that Celtic took the right call by not handing him a deal. As mentioned, he has been mostly on the sidelines in the past year or so, and Celtic can aim higher than Simpson to bring in options for the right-back position.
What now for Lennon?
With Hatem Abd Elhamed coming in, it is being widely reported that he would be the new right-back. However, the 28-year-old hasn’t even played ten games in his career as a right-back. The Israel international is predominantly a centre back, and it is surprising to see him being eyed as a first choice right back.
The Hoops lost as many as three right-backs in the summer. To be honest, a move for a right-sided fullback was always going to be on the cards. However, the two recent names which emerged, i.e. Danny Simpson and Hatem Abd Elhamed are slightly underwhelming. One would have thought that Celtic will look to bring in a more standout option.
Pulling the plug on Simpson is the right call. Hopefully, the club is keeping an eye on another right-back as we think that Elhamed should only be seen as a backup option in that position. Celtic are supposed to be in an excellent financial condition, and the club should look to bring in a more standout and long term option.
We aren’t sure what kind of performances Elhamed would come up with, but if he is seen as a first-choice option, then the club is definitely making a mistake. However, among Simpson and Elhamed, we think that Celtic made the right call by going after the Israel international as he is enjoying a good time in his career right now.