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Celtic’s triple injury blow

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Celtic will be without Hatem Abd Elhamed, Tom Rogic and Mikey Johnston when they return from their winter break.

Elhamed and Rogic have barely played in the last two months while Johnston was nursed back to fitness during that period, making regular substitute appearances that included goals against Rennes and Ross County.

It had been hoped that the three week break that ends with next Saturday’s match against Partick Thistle would see most of the squad resume fitness but that won’t be the case.

Lennon told The Sun:

“Elhamed still has a bit of a groin problem. It’s not long term, but it could be a few weeks. He sort of jolted his groin and got a reaction.

“It’s actually not the same injury, it’s lower down and will maybe mean a couple of weeks. He’s been brilliant for me and it’s a bit of a blow, but there’s nothing I can do about it. We have to be patient with it.”

Jeremie Frimpong has starred at right-back but Lennon has been eager to get experienced Elhamed back into the team. Tom Rogic is also near a return to training but Mikey Johnston is still a fortnight away with a thigh strain.

Jozo Simunovic and Moi Elyounoussi were also injured before the break but weren’t mentioned in the injury update.

While Jeremie Frimpong has excelled at right-back having the experienced Elhamed available would have been a useful addition to Lennon’s defensive options.

Out of 20 SPFL matches Elhamed has only started three games.

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