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Celtic first teamer suffers major injury blow, reportedly could be out until December

By James Black

Celtic defender Jozo Simunovic has withdrawn from the Bosnia and Herzegovina after being dealt with a major injury blow, it has been confirmed by the national team’s doctor.

Simunovic, 23, was due to face Estonia and Belgium but will now return to Glasgow for treatment on a torn hamstring.

The defender was rested for the 2-2 draw with Hibernian after struggling with a knee injury and this latest blow will leave Celtic short at the back for a second extended spell this season.

Nir Bitton filled in as an emergency central defender in the early stages of the campaign and the Daily Record reports that Celtic now face being without Simunovic for up to eight weeks, meaning he could be out of action until December.

“Our manager, Mehmed Bazdarevic and I talked to Jozo’s doctor at Celtic and we got access to all the documentation on the injury’s condition,” Bosnian FA doctor Reuf Karabeg said, as quoted by the Daily Record website.

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“The findings of the scan clearly shows he has a rupture of the hamstring and a haematoma four centimetres long.”

Simunovic was born in Zagreb and captained the Croatian national side at Under-17, Under-19 and Under-21 but swapped allegiance to Bosnia in July this year after becoming frustrated with the lack of opportunities with the Croatian senior squad.

The defender could miss out on some huge games for Celtic this month as the Hoops face a Champions league double-header against Bayern Munich as well as a League Cup semi-final against Hibs and a midweek trip to joint Premiership leaders Aberdeen.

Simunovic has made 12 appearances for Brendan Rodgers’ first-team side this season and was a regular last term as the Hoops swept to an unbeaten domestic treble in Rodgers’ first season in Glasgow.

In other Celtic news, fans have reacted after a key player was ruled out of their clash with Bayern Munich later this month.

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