Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Liel Abada may leave Celtic as boss Brendan Rodgers reveals empathy for player

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 16 Feb 2024


Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers admits Israel international Liel Abada may leave on loan if he cannot get his mind refocused on playing for the club.

Abada will again sit out Celtic’s cinch Premiership encounter with Kilmarnock on Saturday after not being in the right frame of mind to face St Mirren last weekend.

The 22-year-old has faced pressure in his home country because of support for Palestine among Celtic fans.

The situation flared up the day after the October 7 Hamas attacks in Israel, which led to more than 1,100 deaths plus the taking of hostages, when two banners among Celtic fans at Parkhead read: “Free Palestine” and “Victory to the Resistance”.

Palestine flags have continued to be flown among Celtic supporters amid Israel’s ongoing military assault on Gaza. More than 28,000 Palestinians have been killed, mostly women and children, and more than 68,000 wounded, according to Gaza’s health ministry.

The Green Brigade ultras group have asked their fellow fans to join them in song ahead of the Kilmarnock match to pay tribute to the people of Palestine and Abada will not be present.

“It’s still the same situation,” Rodgers said. “I have had lots of conversations with Liel and I am really empathetic towards the issue he has. It’s more than football. It’s at a human level, so I have to respect that.

“He is training, he is working away, but this period is all about the mind and if you’re not quite right or ready, firstly I can’t take any risk with him, because we will always support the player, and obviously I also have to protect the squad as well.”

Rodgers took the then injured Abada out for dinner to discuss his situation in the wake of the October 7 attacks, and he is continuing to offer his support to the player, who did not rediscover his previous form after returning in December.

“I take a great responsibility, that’s why we are here,” the former Liverpool manager said. “My job isn’t just a football manager.

“This is a young guy, 22 years of age, far, far away from home. People can talk about what’s going on there and then they can forget about it. This is the reality for him, this is his life. Every single day, every night, families in a war.

“So it’s a really, really tough situation for him. On a human level, I have real, real empathy for him.

“There’s many situations I have had to deal with as a manager over time, and lots of them you don’t get on the coaching courses. You have to understand and sit in his shoes.

“It’s the sadness of it where he re-signed for us because he had great belief he could go on and develop, then he had a period out with injury and now coming back he has found it a real, real challenge. But I am here for him, to support him, and everything else is secondary to that.

“It’s my job and I will take the human aspect, like I have done with numbers of players before, and look after him.

“And when he’s ready, if he ever is ready, then he will be able to give us everything.”

That caveat opened up the prospect of Abada potentially negotiating a swift exit from Glasgow, perhaps on loan to a league with its transfer window open, before a more permanent parting of the ways in the summer.

When asked if a loan was now an option, Rodgers said: “It’s a possibility. But we’ll see. We will work together on it.”


SoccerNews is news blog for soccer with comprehensive coverage of all the major leagues in Europe, as well as MLS in the United States. In addition we offer breaking news for transfers and transfer rumors, ticket sales, betting tips and offers, match previews, and in-depth editorials.

You can follow us on Facebook: or Twitter: @soccernewsfeed.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This field is required *

Join the conversation!

or Register

Live Scores


Betting Guide Advertisement


Become a Writer
More More