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Celtic could turn to Griffiths to spice up attack for Cup tie: Lennon



Option: Leigh Griffiths is back in the frame for Celtic and could play tonight

Option: Leigh Griffiths is back in the frame for Celtic and could play tonight

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Option: Leigh Griffiths is back in the frame for Celtic and could play tonight

Leigh Griffiths has told Celtic boss Neil Lennon that he is hungry for action.

The 29-year-old Scotland striker had a lengthy spell out earlier in the season due to injuries and personal problems and has not started a Hoops match since a meaningless Europa League group game against Cluj in Romania on December 12, with five subsequent substitute appearances last month.

Griffiths' future was subject to speculation when Poland Under-21 forward Patryk Klimala signed a four-and-half year deal from Jagiellonia Bialystok earlier this week, ostensibly as back up to number one striker Odsonne Edouard, with attacker Vakoun Bayo also at the club recovering from injury.

However, ahead of tonight's William Hill Scottish Cup fourth-round tie against Partick Thistle, Lurgan native Lennon was asked if any other strikers were on the horizon.

"We have Odsonne in and Griff - and Griff is looking good," said the Hoops boss, who confirmed Celtic have agreed a deal with Israeli side Bnei Yehuda to sign midfielder Ismaila Soro.

"He had a good Dubai trip and trained well again this week so maybe not.

"We will see how things go over the next few weeks.

"There has been a lot in the last few months about Griff.

"But he is hungry and he wants to play and he has made that pretty clear to me."

Reports claim Ivory Coast striker Bayo has asked to leave the club on loan for the second half of the season.

Lennon said: "I have no inclination about that at all.

"Bayo has had a few injuries but he is just coming back from a long-term injury. He is back in training now.

"We are hoping there will be a couple of deals done this week where people either go on loan or go permanently.

"There will be two or three players maybe going to leave."

Soro, 21, who was born in the Ivory Coast, played in Moldova and Belarus before moving to Israel in 2018.

"I think a deal has been agreed," Lennon added.

"We are waiting on paperwork now so hopefully that can be resolved over the next few days.

"He is a good player, strong, technically very good, quick across the ground, hungry.

"He is like a number six, very powerful. Gets the ball back, good close control, quite smart with the passes, but at that age he still has a bit of work to do in terms of his tactical awareness.

"We like what we saw. We will give him time to adapt."

Belfast Telegraph