Frank McAvennie is adamant Celtic will sign a new right-back if Hatem Abd Elhamed leaves the club in January.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, the Parkhead legend said that the 29-year-old’s future “sounds like it is up in the air” after recent comments in the press.

Speaking to the Scottish Sun, Elhamed described his situation in Glasgow as “very difficult” as all of his family live in his native Israel, a problem which has been heightened by coronavirus restrictions.

He has started just 10 games across all competitions this season with Jeremie Frimpong preferred at right-back by manager Neil Lennon.

Elhamed still has three years remaining on his contract with the Scottish Premiership champions.

When asked by Football Insider for his thoughts on the potential departure of the right-back, McAvennie said:

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“I think it is a position that they need to address in January and one they would definitely have to address if Elhamed goes.

“I am a big fan of the player and all of a sudden everything sounds like it is up in the air. I liked him but he has barely kicked a ball recently.

“If he is struggling, leave him out and persevere with Frimpong but teach him. He is only a boy.”  

Elhamed told the Scottish Sun earlier this week: “It is very difficult. My wife and son had a hard time adjusting to life in Scotland, for many reasons.

“I am alone here. I finish training and go straight home. I do not leave the house much — and it was like that even before the virus.”

In other Celtic news, Frank McAvennie claims senior player hung out to dry by teammates after ‘awful’ sighting.