According to a recent report from The Scottish Sun, Celtic could be without defender Filip Benkovic for the rest of the season due to injury. The centre back made the move to Parkhead back in the summer on loan from Premier League outfit Leicester City, and his impressive efforts in the heart of the Bhoys backline has seen him become a regular under manager Brendan Rodgers.
However, a recent report from The Scottish Sun suggests that the Croatia Under-21 international picked up a ‘leg problem’ in their 3-0 win over Hamilton in the Scottish Premiership at the weekend, a problem which reportedly (as per The Scottish Sun) could see him miss the rest of the season.
Thus, with Benkovic possibly out for the remainder of the campaign, Rodgers might well be on the lookout for a centre back in the last knockings of the transfer window, with veteran Everton defender Phil Jagielka potentially the man to fill the void left by the Croatian sensation.
Ultimately, 21-year-old Benkovic has been something of a revelation since making the move north of the border back in the summer, with the centre back very much nailing down a place in Rodgers’ starting eleven such have been his high-level displays for the seven-times defending league champions.
The Croatian ace, capped seven times at Under-21 level by his country, has appeared in each of Celtic’s last 15 league matches and in that time has helped the club to a staggering nine clean sheets, while he also did his bit to help the Bhoys through their Europa League group, as well as win the Scottish League Cup back in November.
Clearly then, if a recent report from The Scottish Sun is indeed correct, losing Benkovic for the rest of the campaign would be a huge blow to Rodgers and his side, which is why delving into the transfer window for someone to fill that void is an absolute must – Jagielka well could be that man.
Yes, the Englishman may well be entering the latter stages of his career at the age of 36, but there is little doubting that he still retains the quality to do a job in the heart of the backline, having done so effectively for Everton and indeed England over the years.
The defender has appeared 380 times for the Toffees following his move from Sheffield United back in 2007, while in that time he has also earned 40 England caps to underline his status as one of the country’s best centre backs in the last decade or so.
Significantly, it was only last season in which the 36-year-old appeared 25 times for the Merseysiders in the Premier League as they finished ninth under Sam Allardyce, with this term the only one in which Jagielka has fallen down the pecking order – the arrivals of Kurt Zouma and Yerry Mina have forced that upon the Englishman.
Nonetheless, recent years have underlined that Jagielka remains a hugely adept centre back who also possesses a wealth of experience that would aid many a side in the UK, not least a Celtic team facing a title challenge this season as they go in search of an eighth successive league crown.
And with Benkovic reportedly (as per The Scottish Sun) set to miss the rest of the season through injury, Rodgers would be wise to launch a move for Jagielka, who could go some way to filling the void left by the 21-year-old.
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