CELTIC have suffered another massive injury blow with the news Nir Bitton is out for the rest of the season.
The versatile Israeli international will miss tonight’s Euro League last-32 tie against Zenit St Petersburg at Parkhead and also the remainder of the Hoops’ campaign after being told he needs surgery on a damaged knee.
Boss Brendan Rodgers said: “Nir will probably be out for the season. It’s a shame for him as he’s a very important member of our squad.
“It’s a slight issue with his knee he has put himself through.
“We had a look at it last week in London and were told he needs the operation.
“In terms of injuries overall this year has been tough for us.”
Bitton joins Craig Gordon, Stuart Armstrong, Patrick Roberts, Leigh Griffiths, Dedryck Boyata and Marvin Compper on the crocked and ineligible list for the tie against the Russians.
Tom Rogic, who has been out for two months with a knee problem, also won’t start, but Mikael Lustig is making good progress with his Achilles injury.
Meanwhile, Roberts has returned to parent club Manchester City for final clearance on his hamstring problem.
Rodgers said: “Patrick won’t be involved. He is getting clearance on his injury so he has gone back to City to make sure everything is okay.”