According to the latest reports from Daily Record, Leicester City are open to sending Filip Benkovic on loan in January, and that could potentially open the door for his Celtic return. The Croatian defender hasn’t played a single minute of football for the senior team and has struggled even to make it in the matchday squads. Benkovic has been playing for Leicester City’s u-23 side so far this season.
Rodgers willing to send Benkovic to Celtic
When Rodgers became the Leicester manager, he had indicated that he would be ready to ship Benkovic on loan if the situation arises. The Northern Irish boss had said in May this year, ”There’s no doubt that if I want him to go out on loan again, I’d want him to go to Celtic. Of course, I’ll have a conversation with the player – I think he’s a big talent. Filip is a top-class young player, but if he goes on loan again, I’d love him to return to Celtic. He needs to play, and Celtic has been a great experience for him.”
Even after selling Harry Maguire in the summer, the Foxes have done well at the back as Caglar Soyuncu has taken everyone by surprise with his consistent performances. Premier League-winning captain Wes Morgan is the backup choice right now, and that is why Benkovic has struggled to even get in the matchday squads.
Do Celtic need Benkovc now?
The Hoops went on to sign Christopher Jullien for big money in the summer. Jullien has settled in well and has been impressive so far at the back. Jozo Simunovic is currently out with a long term injury, and he is expected to be back around January next year. Kristoffer Ajer is the current first-choice option.
However, the emergence of Nir Bitton as a centre half has eased Lennon’s pressure at the back. Moreover, summer arrival Hatem Abd Elhamed is also capable of playing in the centre back role along with the right-back position.
Therefore, even with Simunovic’s injury, Celtic have a decent amount of cover in defence. However, if there is another injury issue from now until January, then Lennon could definitely consider making a move for Benkovic.
The Croatian impressed last season as he was brilliant with his reading of the game and he was robust and aerially dominant. There is no doubt that he will be a quality addition to Celtic’s backline. But Lennon should assess the situation from now until January as they don’t desperately need a centre half.
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