Monday 20 November 2017

Lennon cries foul at Israeli FA after Kayal injury confusion

Ronnie Esplin

Celtic manager Neil Lennon has accused the Israel FA of disrespecting the club by leaving him in the dark about Beram Kayal's ankle injury.

The injury to Kayal could rule him out of today's league clash with Dundee United at Parkhead.

He was taken from the field on a stretcher in the first half of Israel's 4-3 friendly defeat to the Ivory Coast on Wednesday night following a challenge from Chelsea striker Didier Drogba.

However, the Celtic manager, who has a host of other injury worries to contend with, was unaware of the extent of the injury until Kayal returned to Glasgow.

Left-back Emilio Izaguirre broke his ankle at Aberdeen last week and could be out for six months.

Centre-half Glenn Loovens is out for another month with a hamstring injury, while captain Scott Brown hurt his ankle playing for Scotland against Denmark at Hampden in midweek, which leaves him in doubt for the visit of the Taysiders.

Lennon, though, believes he should have been informed sooner about his Israeli midfielder.

"I am not happy with the Israeli FA. There has been a lack of communication between their medical team and my medical team," he said.


"Kayal got a bad one. It was a big impact from the tackle, he rolled his ankle and it is still quite swollen, so he is obviously a major doubt for tomorrow. But we only knew the extent of the injury when we saw Beram yesterday.

"It's not the first time that's happened to us. It has happened with other countries. I'm disappointed by the way we are being treated when we are good enough to let our players go.

"There is a duty there that they should be straight on the phone to our football club and let us know the extent of the injury and at least give my doctor an explanation of what has happened."

One positive from the international week was the scintillating performance of Paddy McCourt, who scored twice in Northern Ireland's 4-0 victory over the Faroe Islands.

"I know Paddy can do that. I was delighted for him," Lennon said.

"He wasn't sure he would start the game, so I am pleased for him. It gave Northern Ireland a boost and he made a huge contribution and entertained the crowd, which is what he can do.

"He would probably like to play more games, but he is a valuable member of the squad. He has just got to be patient."

Lennon has still not given up hope of bringing Manchester City striker Craig Bellamy back to Parkhead, but seemed to accept that he will lose Polish goalkeeping target, Grzegorz Sandomierski, to Genk.

Irish Independent

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