Football

Emilio Izaguirre Reveals How Brendan Rodgers Blocked Him Leaving Celtic

Emilio Izaguirre Reveals How Brendan Rodgers Blocked Him Leaving Celtic

Emilio Izaguirre is once again Celtic‘s first-choice left-back, for the moment at least, just a few short months after it seemed the Honduran had played his last game for the Hoops.

Following the emergence of the brilliant Kieran Tierney last season, Izaguirre was relegated to the teenager’s back-up and a parting of the ways last summer seemed inevitable.

In fact, Izaguirre seemed so sure that he would depart Glasgow that he said his emotional goodbyes to the Parkhead crowd during the final home game of last season.

But the arrival of Brendan Rodgers seemed to change the defender’s thinking, and Tierney’s ankle injury has thrust Izaguirre back into the first-team fold.

He was outstanding in the 1-1 draw away to Borussia Mönchengladbach on Tuesday night and, afterwards, he explained via the Sun: “There was a time when I thought I would be leaving Celtic and Scotland. In the summer, I tried to move to another club to play more football.

“But the manager told me that he needed me in case anything happened to young KT.

“Now I am playing again in the Champions League and I am just focusing on helping Celtic succeed. This is football. It can change any day. Maybe tomorrow, something else will happen.

“Sometimes you play, sometimes you don’t. That’s what happens when you are a footballer. And when you play for a club like Celtic, you always have to be ready.

“When you get the chance, you have to be ready to take it and be focused.

“Of course, I feel sorry for KT that he is injured and will be out for two months.

“I play for Celtic, but I am also a Celtic fan. I want the team to do well and I want to help the club in any way that I can.

“I am very disappointed for KT because he is a young player who has been very good for a long time now. He is a fantastic player and he will come back from this injury even stronger.

“But I need to focus on football and continue to fight for the team and for the club.

“On Tuesday, it was disappointing because we felt that in the last 10 minutes we could have got the win.

“We tried everything we could, we had chances, but we didn’t get the goal.

“Overall, we showed great concentration for 90 minutes, but at the end of the game, we had chances and a lot of pressure. But football is like that. Sometimes you have chances, but you draw.

“Now we have to think about the Scottish Premiership and also the game against Barcelona in the Champions League. We must try to win that game to have any chance qualifying.

“We have two tough games, but we need to give it our best and have the maximum concentration for 90 minutes. We have to focus on Barcelona and try to beat them.

“We need to work hard and try to get good results against Barca and Manchester City and then see where we finish in the group.”

Now 30, Izaguirre isn’t the spring chicken he once was when he arrived at Celtic back in 2010, but his performance earlier this week proved he’s still more than capable at the top level.

However, his contract expires in the summer – will Brendan Rodgers be able to persuade him to stick around and potentially play second-fiddle even longer?

What do you think?

Let us know in the comments section below…


 

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