Brendan Rodgers has admitted he is willing to allow Lewis Morgan to leave Celtic on loan with Hibs having already enquired about taking the winger to Easter Road.
Neil Lennon is anxious to strengthen his squad, further depleted by the news that Martin Boyle will be out of action for the rest of the season after undergoing surgery on a serious knee injury.
And he sees 22-year-old former St Mirren player Morgan as the ideal replacement as he seeks to add pace to his attacking options. Morgan signed a four-and-a-half-year deal with Celtic this time last year and was loaned back to the Buddies for the remainder of last season, helping them win the Championship title. But he has been used sparingly by Rodgers this season and the Celtic manager sees sending him and defender Jack Hendry out on loan to gain game time as the next step in their development. Admitting there was “an interest in a number of our players”, Rodgers cited the example of Ryan Christie, who was farmed out to Aberdeen for 18 months, as how such deals could work in his club’s favour.
He said: “Lewis just joined the club in the last six months. You saw it with Ryan Christie, a perfect example of if you’re not ready now you can go away on a good loan or a couple of loans and when you come back in, and you get your opportunity, you’ve got to take it.”
Both Morgan and Hendry are with Celtic at their winter training camp in Dubai but Rodgers has spoken to them about his plans which will be furthered when his squad returns to Glasgow this weekend. Rodgers is happy to play the long game as far as Morgan and Hendry are concerned, saying: “It’s just about time. When you think of Jack coming in a year ago it was a steep learning curve for him, playing under big pressure and big games.
“What he has is potential because there are a lot of really good things to his game and of course when you make mistakes at the big clubs then of course it gets highlighted even more. But he was brought in because he had that potential.
“He’s not 17, 18 so he needs to continue with that learning and learn from the mistakes. Sometimes that’s just about getting games elsewhere. That’s something we’ve spoken about and we’d be keen to do.”