Brendan Rodgers’ comments about Moussa Dembele, “It’s something you have to deal with”, suggests it is likely we will be without him tonight, meaning we go into one of the biggest games of the season without (currently) our best striker.
As it stands right now, it is likely, but not certain, that Moussa will leave this week. For a start, those delicate muscles would need to pass a fitness test. One week ago, Celtic expected the player to remain at the club until January, when they believed his value would be no less than it was then. That possibility remains, and it should be noted, Moussa has behaved professionally.
The situation is far from ideal. Only yesterday, I wrote about the need to concentrate on the important job to be done tonight. Under any reasonable circumstances, we should see Suduva out of the competition comfortably, but this is football and we both know anything can happen if one team is even 10% off peak form.
The Europa League is a poor relation to the Champions League but it remains hugely important, not least of all in attracting one or two players, who will want European as well as domestic exposure. I don’t know how motivated the squad are, but they should be at peak preparedness; tonight is significantly the most important game of the week.
One positive is that Leigh Griffiths was made for days like these. He has the experience and aptitude to lead the line.
Let’s get this job done.