Celtic earned a respectable draw against Rennes in the Europa League game away from home. The Ligue 1 outfit is currently second on the table in their domestic league after the first five games, so this one point should be seen as a positive result for Lennon and Co.
However, the draw came at some cost as defender Boli Bolingoli-Mbombo had to go off in the second half due to injury. Celtic have been facing an injury crisis at the back for quite some time, and they must have been worried about Bolingoli’s latest injury scare.
Lennon on the timeframe of Bolingoli’s absence
Lennon though recently made it clear that the injury isn’t too serious (Celtic Youtube Channel) and Bolingoli might only miss a week of action after he felt his groin in the clash against Rennes.
The manager gave an update and said, ”It’s not too serious, hopefully. He’ll be a major doubt obviously for the weekend and maybe Partick Thistle (in the Betfred Cup on Wednesday). It’s a slight groin strain, and he just felt it progressively getting worse. Obviously, he didn’t want to have it deteriorate for a concerted period of time. So hopefully he’ll maybe just miss one or two games.”
Left-back has been a problematic area for the Hoops ever since the departure of Kieran Tierney. Bolingoli has done well on the attacking front, but he has looked vulnerable defensively. Everyone heavily panned his performance against Cluj in the Champions League qualifiers, and Lennon decided to use midfielder Callum McGregor at left-back in the second leg which massively backfired.
However, after a few poor outings, the former Rapid Wien defender has managed to gain a footing in the team, and he has done well in the past few games. But, question marks remain whether he would be able to cope against sides where he might have to do a lot of defensive work.
What are the alternatives for Celtic?
Greg Taylor who joined from Kilmarnock this summer is an option for Lennon, and he might be in contention to get a start in the upcoming two games. The manager can also opt for the experience of Jonny Hayes if he wants. With more time, Bolingoli is likely to improve, and there is enough potential in him to nail down the first-team spot. Taylor meanwhile will look to impress in his injury absence, but as Lennon confirmed, the Belgian wouldn’t be out for too long.
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