Celtic need to wait for UCL commitments to end before potential move for Israeli star

It’s well-known just how much difference the money associated with the UCL group stages can make, but it provokes uncertainty for the teams in the qualifying rounds.

The best players want to be playing in the main UCL competition so failing to qualify can often lead to transfer requests, but clubs will also look to hold onto their key players until their involvement in the main competition is over.

The Daily Record has reported that’s going to be the situation for Celtic when it comes to Israeli midfielder Mohammed Abu Fani. The Maccabi Haifa impressed recently for Israel and is said to be attracting interest from various European clubs, but they don’t want to lose him before their upcoming qualifiers.

Their double-header with Greek giants Olympiacos is set for the 20th and 27th of July so nothing is going to happen before then, and it’s likely that it would be delayed further if they manage to get through that.

The 24-year-old can play anywhere through the centre of midfield and has spent his entire career in Israel, but he’s built up experience in various European competitions and has 12 caps for his country, so this does feel like a natural time for him to move on.

The biggest competition for his signature would appear to come from Frankfurt who can also offer guaranteed group stage UCL football, but unless he’s one of Ange’s major targets, it makes sense to look elsewhere rather than waiting for a team to get knocked out before a move can be made.

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Still trying to figure out exactly why Vidar Riseth hammered the ball across his own goal line that night in Perth....

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