Celtic

Odsonne Edouard expected to miss Celtic's Champions League qualifiers

Ross Jackson
May 6, 2021, 4:00 PM GMT+1
Odsonne Edouard is expected to be called up to the France side to compete at the 2021 Olympics
Odsonne Edouard is expected to be called up to the France side to compete at the 2021 Olympics / Ian MacNicol/Getty Images
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Celtic's plans for next season have already been dealt a major blow with the news Odsonne Edouard is likely to miss their Champions League qualifying campaign.

The Bhoys' inability to retain their Scottish Premiership title for a tenth consecutive season means they'll be forced to start their qualification for next season's edition of Europe's premier club competition from the second round, whereas champions Rangers will join the competition at the third qualifying round.

Odsonne Edouard in action with the France Under-21 side
Odsonne Edouard in action with the France Under-21 side / John Berry/Getty Images

The first leg of Celtic's second qualifying round tie is scheduled for July 20 or 21, with the second leg taking place a week later on either July 27 or 28.

Should they emerge to the third round of Champions League qualifying, they'll then play again on August 3 or 4 with the second leg scheduled for August 10.

So many matches early on in the campaign is hardly ideal, though Celtic are now facing the prospect of having to play said games without their star striker with the Scottish Sun reporting that Edouard will 'definitely' be included in France youth team coach Sylvain Ripoll's squad for the summer Olympics.

France's schedule at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics sees their group campaign kick off on July 22 and -dependant on their success at the tournament - they could be over in the Far East for a number of weeks with the final taking place on August 7.

Odsonne Edouard in action in the Old Firm derby
Odsonne Edouard in action in the Old Firm derby / Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

While the news of Edouard's likely involvement in this summer's Olympics will hardly come as music to the ears of all involved with the club, it could yet turn out to be irrelevant with the 23-year-old's future a constant source of speculation.

A lot could depend on the new man through the door at Celtic as they continue to hunt for a new manager following Neil Lennon's departure last February.

Former Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe was strongly linked with a move to last season's Scottish Premiership champions, though their search for a new boss goes on.

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