Having suffered an early injury crisis in central defence this season, Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers will have been left thinking that the worst of the problems were behind him – but that is not the case.
While the back line is now looking a lot healthier than it once was, it is the midfield where the issues now lie, with the manager faced with a distinct lack of options in the centre of the park heading into some crunch fixtures.
Eboue Kouassi and Olivier Ntcham were selected as the starters for the League Cup semi final clash against Hearts, but neither lasted the full 90 minutes, both appearing to come off in some discomfort.
Now the French star has confirmed to the Daily Record that he is out of action against Dundee on Wednesday, and with no news on his partner from Sunday, it is best to assume he is not making the clash either.
With the likes of Scott Brown and Nir Bitton also out of action, Rodgers is facing something of a crisis when it comes to senior options – which is why it is time for Youssouf Mulumbu to make a swift return from the Parkhead wilderness he found himself in.
The veteran, who has just two appearances under his belt so far, went from starting his pair of outings thus far to the substitutes’ bench, but has been completely absent for the last two games with no hint of an injury blow.
He is an experienced head with plenty of experience and it is that proven ability which Rodgers needs in the midfield, rather than calling upon some youngster or shoehorning an unnatural fit to plug the gap in the middle of the park.
Dundee might not be the biggest threat but having a ball winner like Mulumbu in is a no-brainer for the boss, and it gives the veteran a run out after being somewhat cruelly cast aside of late.