CRAIG GORDON’S expected exit from Celtic at the end of his contract in June could be delayed.
The 37-year-old Scotland international keeper came close to quitting the champions in the January transfer window with his former club Hearts among teams linked with the shotstopper who was clearly unhappy at the lack of game-time.
Gordon came back into the first team when Scott Bain broke a finger in the 4-3 Champions League departure against Cluj at Parkhead on August 13.
He played in the 2-1 Betfred League Cup extra-time win over Dunfermline and the 2-0 Europa League qualifier against AIK Stockholm before dropping back onto the substitutes’ bench when old favourite Fraser Forster returned on a season-long loan from Southampton and made his second Hoops debut in the 3-1 victory over Hearts on August 25.
Gordon’s hopes of a move at the turn of the year were dashed when boss Neil Lennon insisted he was too valuable to the club at a crucial stage of the campaign as he required experienced back-up in an emergency situation.
It looks as though the former £9million man could be remaining in the east end of Glasgow for a little longer with the reports out-of-contract players could be set to stay with their clubs beyond the expiry of their deals, according to a leaked FIFA document.
The emergency lockdown of football worldwide due to the coronavirus pandemic has brought chaos to the game, on and off the pitch.
While UEFA had planned to complete domestic seasons by the end of June 30 – the completion of most player contracts – that looks increasingly unlikely.
ON THE MOVE…Jonny Hayes in action against Motherwell.
The head of Serie A has hinted the 2019/20 season could be extended into July and August, but that would present an issue with current player deals.
Respected news agency Reuters insist it has seen a FIFA document that recommends current contracts for players and coaches should be extended until the end of the delayed domestic campaigns.
The confidential document also recommends allowing transfer windows to be changed in accordance with new season dates and urges clubs and players to work together to find solutions to salary payments during stoppages.
That could have huge implications for players who had been expecting to find a new club in the summer.
Gordon would almost certainly have been among those looking to get a deal elsewhere and team-mate Jonny Hayes, a £1.3million signing from Aberdeen in the summer of 2007, could also be in line for a switch with his contract about to runs its course, as CQN reported last week.
However, FIFA could now step in to ensure that they remain until the current campaign can be completed.
It’s also possible that the season could be declared completed before June 30, to avoid potential issues with free agents.