Returning Celtic star required a bone graft to get him back to full fitness

Celtic’s Greg Taylor has revealed the extent of the remedial surgery required on his shoulder injury to allow him to return to first-team action following almost three months on the sidelines.

Greg Taylor during a Celtic training session at Lennoxtown.
Greg Taylor during a Celtic training session at Lennoxtown.

The left-back’s problems, which ended with his appearance in the club’s 3-0 weekend win at Dundee United, appeared to originate from him putting his shoulder out and being forced off in Dutch-staged Europa League play-off success against AZ Alkmaar way back in late August. In his re-appearance three weeks later for a home win over Ross County, he again suffered the same fate. It seems the effects of the dislocation suggested a weakness in the area that required a specialist solution.

“I got a procedure where you get a bone graft to stabilise it,” the 24-year-old explained. “It was just about making sure the bone had healed and giving it time to heal. But thankfully there were no complications from the operation. I am very grateful to the surgeon but also everyone who has helped me on the way back – the staff, the sports science staff and coaching team.”

A weekend comeback for Taylor, in the frame to face Real Betis on Thursday, wasn’t trailed by Ange Postecoglou, but the player insists it wasn’t a rushed development, coming just as Anthony Ralston was sidelined with an ankle problem that resulted in Josip Juranovic vacating left-back to switch to his more orthodox role. “With my injury, it was a bit different as it was the shoulder,” he said. "I have been training physically for the best part of five weeks, doing running. It was a case of waiting for the go-ahead from the surgeon to resume contact stuff. That happened pretty recently and from that moment, I was available to play. So I wasn't too surprised when the manager put me back in and I was happy to get the chance from him.

"It was a frustrating time for me as I was able to run – but just couldn't take part in full training. At one stage I was doing the same thing every day but we had aims here and there. I was looking to build more strength in my legs and things like that. Before that, I'd never had a long-term injury but I was able to get through it and there was light at the end of the tunnel when I played at Dundee United. It's really to be back playing. It was a long period out. Thankfully, touch wood, that's it over and I can focus on the games up until the winter break.”

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