Celtic target Hatem Abd Elhamed was surprisingly dropped by Hapoel Beer-Sheva for their Europa League clash against KF Laci, increasing speculation of a move to Celtic Park.

According to reports in Israel, cited by the Scotsman, Abd Elhamed was fully fit for the meeting but was omitted from the side who drew 1-1 against the Albanian outfit on Thursday.

The Israel international has been linked with a move to Scotland this summer, with the 28-year-old capable of playing at both right-back and centre-back.

Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images Sport

The defender is thought to be available for just £1.5 million this summer, with Neil Lennon keen on bolstering his right-back and centre-back options.

Lennon has already added to his defence with the permanent captures of Christopher Jullien from Toulouse and Boli Bolingoli-Mbombo from Rapid Vienna.

However, the latest report could mean that the Hoops will step up their pursuit of the unsettled Abd Elhamed, or they are edging closer to a deal for the player without many knowing.

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