Neil Lennon is confident Celtic could continue to cope with the absence of Odsonne Edouard as they carefully monitor his condition.
The French striker missed Thursday night’s Europa League match against Rennes with a muscle injury and is doubtful for Sunday’s Premiership fixture at Ross County.
Celtic have a packed schedule of nine games in December, including the Betfred Cup final against Rangers at Hampden next weekend, and are short of cover for top scorer Edouard.
Leigh Griffiths has so far been restricted to two substitute appearances since rejoining the squad, while Ivory Coast international Vakoun Bayo has been sidelined for a month with a knee injury.
Lennon deployed winger Lewis Morgan as a stand-in striker against Rennes and he scored the opening goal in Celtic’s 3-1 win.
“We told the players before the game that we can’t use Odsonne’s injury as an excuse,” said the Celtic manager. “Listen, we all know how important he is. But if we do lose him for a game or two, others can come in and we can still win the game. I don’t want to be going to the press after a game and saying ‘We didn’t win because we don’t have Odsonne’. That’s not the way it works.
“We’ll see how Odsonne is, we’ll take it day by day. It’s just a little niggle he’s got, a little break of the skin around a muscle. It’s touch and go whether he’ll be fit for the weekend.”
Lennon is uncertain whether he will go into the transfer market in January to enhance his striking options for the second half of the season.
“Well, we’ve got Leigh Griffiths there and hopefully he won’t be a million miles away,” said Lennon. “Again, we’re taking it softly, softly with him at the minute. Bayo is not a million miles away from returning to training. But, yeah, it’s something we’ll look at in January. It’s an area we may need to bolster. But we’ll see.”