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Thursday, August 11, 2022

Celtic dealt major blow ahead of Ross County trip as Ange Postecoglou left with selection dilemma

Celtic’s Reo Hatate in action during the 2-0 friendly win over Norwich City. (Photo by Ewan Bootman / SNS Group)

The 24-year-old was forced off 66 minutes into the 2-0 win over Aberdeen in last Sunday’s Premiership opener for the Scottish champions and has failed to recover for the Dingwall trip. Celtic manager Ange Posteocoglou said at the time that the Japanese attacker had taken a couple of heavy knocks but no timescale has been given for his likely recovery.

Postecoglou is not short of options for replacing Hatate in his central triangle. It is likely that David Turnbull will come in, with the Scotland international introduced for Hatate last weekend. Turnbull and Hatate were two of Celtic’s brightest performers in pre-season, so the loss of latter shouldn’t cause major disruption. There is also the possibility of a first start for Aaron Mooy. The Australian had an abridged pre-season after cutting his ties with Chinese club Shanghai SIPG, but has now been in full training for the past three weeks with the Glasgow club.

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