Celtic striker Leigh Griffiths has been been time off by manager Brendan Rodgers as he seeks professional help fro “ongoing issues”. There is no news of how long he will be out for, but it is expected to be longer than a month.
Rodgers said that issues were “confidential” but spoke of how close he is with the player, and how he was happy to grant the time off request.
“Leigh has had ongoing issues for a number of months. He’s reached a point where it’s a struggle for him. We are going to give him all the professional help he needs to get him back in a good place.”
“[He’s] reached a point where it’s a struggle and needs to find a happiness. He’s a great guy but football and life is tough for him right now. We want to help him with that and we’ll let you know when he’s back.
“I’m very close with him. We have a strong relationship but he’s had number of issues outside of football.
“The most important thing for managers and coaches is the welfare of players. It’s no longer a weakness to talk now. He has all of our support – the team, the staff and the supporters.”
Griffiths returned from an injury that kept him out of action for six weeks, and spoke then of how he had to overcome dark times during his recovery. It is unclear whether this is related to that incident.
The player has made 22 appearances this season for Celtic across their Scottish Premier, Champions League and Europa League campaigns and has scored on six occasions, the most recent in Celtic’s 3-0 win over Hamilton Academical on 24th November.
He is expected to miss the Old Firm derby which sees Celtic travel to Rangers on 29th December.