HATEM ABD ELHAMED has suffered a fresh setback in his comeback bid.

The Israeli international right-back has been missing for the past two months after sustaining a groin injury in the Hoops’ historic 2-1 Europa League win over Lazio in Rome on November 7.

Elhamed worked through his rehabilitation and rejoined his team-mates in their warm-weather training HQ in Dubai this week.

Unfortunately, the 28-year-old defender provoked a reaction, but boss Neil Lennon insisted it was a fresh concern.

The Hoops gaffer, speaking to the Daily Record, said: “Elhamed still has a bit of a groin problem. It’s not long term, but it could be a few weeks.

“He sort of jolted his groin and got a reaction. It’s actually not the same injury. It’s lower down.

“He’s been brilliant for me and it’s a bit of a blow, but there’s nothing I can do about it. We have to be patient with it.”

Lennon also revealed winger Mikey Johnston has had a scan on a thigh issue and could be facing a fortnight on the sidelines which could see him miss the forthcoming games against Partick Thistle in the Scottish Cup at Firhill a week tomorrow and the Premiership clashes against Kilmarnock at Rugby Park the following midweek and the home match against Ross County.

However, to balance that bad news, on-loan Mohamed Elyounoussi is onto the next stage of his return from a foot injury.

The Norwegian international forward had protective casting around the damaged area, but Lennon explained: “Elyounoussi is out of the boot now and may train at the start of next week.”

Lennon also gave an update on Australian international Tom Rogic and added: “He is doing gym work, core work. He could train next week.”


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