Celtic signing Marvin Compper sidelined for up to month by injury

Celtic defender Marvin Compper
Marvin Compper is Celtic's most expensive signing on January so far

New Celtic signing Marvin Compper may have to wait another month before making his competitive debut for the Scottish Premiership leaders.

The 32-year-old central defender, who signed for £1m from RB Leipzig, picked up a calf injury training in Dubai.

Brendan Rodgers' side face Brechin City in the Scottish Cup on Saturday.

"He was unfortunate that he got injured when he was out there, so we will have to wait and see how long that's going to be," the manager said of the German.

"It looks like it could be three to four weeks.

"That's unfortunate, but he has settled into the squad well. Marvin has gelled very well."

Celtic's only other major January signing is winger Lewis Morgan, who has been loan back to St Mirren, and Rodgers expects to make further signings in the January transfer window.

He says Celtic's cut of Virgil van Dijk's £75m transfer from Southampton to Liverpool is a welcome addition to the transfer budget but said "we stay calm" because "we have a month to do it".

Dundee defender Jack Hendry in action against Celtic
Rodgers would not enter speculation linking Dundee's Jack Hendry with Celtic

"Yes, I expect so," he said when quizzed on whether he had plans to make further signings. "I think that it is something we'll look to do.

"For us, it's all about trying to get the quality and not necessarily about numbers.

"It's about trying to get in the players who can make a difference for us."

Moussa Dembele has been linked with a move to England and Rodgers was not willing to speculate about whether the French striker is likely to stay at Celtic.

"I can't say either way," he said. "You just never know.

"But, at this moment in time, Moussa is here and training. We shall see."

Rodgers dismissed a question about reported interest in Dundee defender Jack Hendry by saying he preferred to avoid speculation.

He stressed that, despite Compper's injury and Erik Sviatchenko being sent on loan to Midtjylland, he is content with the numbers he has in central defence.

"I don't know how many defenders you think we need," he said. "We've brought in a defender, we've got two centre-halves playing, we've got Jozo Simunovic, so we've got four centre-halves.

Celtic striker Moussa Dembele in training
Rodgers could not say whether Moussa Dembele would remain at Celtic

"Erik needed to go out and play games. He's a good guy but didn't get the game time he wanted, so it made sense for him to go and get some games."

There was another injury scare earlier this week when it emerged that midfielder Stuart Armstrong had been rushed in for a hernia operation.

"He flew straight from Dubai to have his operation in Munich," added Rodgers. "We got him in as quickly as we possibly could.

"He had a specialist operation where the recovery time for a hernia is a lot less.

"Hopefully, he'll be back training in 10 days."

Meanwhile, Rodgers suggested that Celtic are better than they were this time last year despite having fewer points.

He is adamant the team has improved on last season and were better in games and training in the winter break in Dubai this time around then they were last year.

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