Greg Taylor’s fresh injury setback has provided Celtic with a notable cause for concern ahead of Thursday’s clash with FC Copenhagen, and it seems Neil Lennon has more than one option to consider in his likely absence.
Victory over Aberdeen on Sunday was slightly marred by Taylor’s forced withdrawal inside the first half.
Lennon has since confirmed that the 22-year-old felt a twinge in his hamstring and was worried about ripping it if he played on, and he is now a doubt for the Europa League clash.
The former Kilmarnock man had established himself as the Hoops’ first choice left-back in recent weeks, but Lennon may have to choose a different player to deputise in his absence against the Danish outfit.
And it appears Jeremie Frimpong has subtly thrown his hat into the ring while speaking to the Glasgow Evening Times.
“I play on the right and left.
“Left-back, right-back, I’ve played there. I have played on the left before. It’s been frustrating. I want to get on the pitch as fast as I can.
“I’ve been waiting for this day so I’m ready. I don’t know if the system will change. I just have to work hard in training. That’s all I can do.”
The 19-year-old clearly has an insatiable appetite for the game and is desperate to return to first-team football as soon as possible.
Jonny Hayes received heavy criticism from supporters last weekend for his perceived lacklustre showing against Aberdeen, which suggests Lennon may have to think twice about selecting him in a high profile fixture in Europe.
The obvious solution is Boli Bolingoli but Kieran Devlin’s recent verdict on the growing left-back conundrum implies he isn’t yet ready to make his full return to the fold.
Hayes offers more balance than Frimpong at left-back due to that fact he is naturally left-footed, while he is significantly more experienced at 32 years of age.
The one distinct advantage the 19-year-old has is his suitability to the full-back role and his form at right-back this season, which has seen him score two goals and provide four assists in just 19 appearances across all competitions, could well swing the decision in his favour.
Judging by his comments in the Scottish media, Frimpong is absolutely chomping at the bit to be involved in whatever way possible on Thursday.
The decision facing Lennon is straightforward: gamble on a hungry yet inexperienced player with genuine full-back credentials, or trust in a makeshift option with experience on the European stage.