Neil Lennon boosted by Finnbogason's exit but in the dark over replacement
Nikola Djurdjic will prove an unknown quantity to Celtic as they take on Helsingborg.
Neil Lennon concedes the “bonus” of Helsingborg being without leading scorer Alfred Finnbogason is tempered by the unknown quantity of his replacement.
Nikola Djurdjic has been recruited on loan to plug the gap left by the Icelandic forward, who reneged on an agreement to make a permanent switch to Sweden to join Dutch side Heerenveen late last week.
Finnbogason netted 12 goals in 17 appearances for Helsingborg before his unexpected departure and Lennon says Celtic’s Champions League opponents will be weakened.
"It is a bonus for us because he [Finnbogason] is a very good player and he was in good goalscoring form," said Lennon.
"I think a lot of Helsingborg play went through him so he will be a loss to them."
Of Djurdjic, however, Lennon was less certain. He said: "I know the name but I don't know too much about him.
"That is one they might throw in as a surprise package, I don't know but obviously if he has a good goal scoring record in Norway then he is obviously one we will keep an eye on.
"But we have no information on him as yet. We will have to check him out."
Serbian striker Djurdjic has moved to Helsingborg from Norwegian side Haugesund until January, having netted 57 times in 107 matches over the last four seasons.
Under Champions League regulations, the 26-year-old is eligible to play. Clubs are able to add one "wild card" player to their squads up until 11pm before the first leg of any qualifying round tie.
Another forward man, Alejandro Bedoya, is better known to Celtic following his unsuccessful spell at Rangers. The American netted on his debut at the weekend, as Helsingborg went down 2-1 to Elfsborg.
"It is difficult sometimes to grow in the Old Firm environment," Lennon said of Bedoya.
"He came from Swedish football so maybe he is better suited to Swedish football and he came at a difficult time in [Rangers’] history.
"But no doubt he will be a threat, we had him watched at the weekend, he scored a very good goal and I think he more than most will be motivated to play us."