Brave Beram: Kayal pledges to return from ankle ligament injury by the end of season
Beram Kayal vowed to defy the doctors who have warned him his season is effectively over.
The Israeli midfielder went under the knife in London on Monday, with manager Neil Lennon taking to the Celtic website to confirm the diagnosis of a four-month lay-off.
After a complex two-hour procedure slotted a displaced ankle ligament back into place and cleaned out bone fragments, however, Kayal bullishly set his sights on coming back stronger and sooner than anyone expects.
‘The doctor and specialist sat with me this morning and said that the surgery was successful,’ said the 23-year-old.
Not giving up: Kayal, being carried off after sustaining his ankle injury
against Rangers, plans a quick return
‘The timing has been lousy for me after we reclaimed top spot in the league in such an impressive way.
‘But just as I’ve come back stronger in the past, I believe that I will do so again this time.
‘I can’t wait to start the rehabilitation process so that I can be back on the pitch sooner than expected.’
Kayal has been ordered to spend the next two weeks lying down with his injured foot raised before doctors decide when he can walk again.
The damage is done: Kayal feels the force of Lee McCulloch's challenge
Either way, Parkhead boss Lennon has already resigned himself to losing one of his top stars until mid-May at the earliest.
‘This is very sad news for Beram,’ said Lennon. ‘He has been brilliant for us and instrumental in our performances during the season.
‘He will definitely be a big loss for us. But, more importantly, we are very disappointed for him to be missing such a large part of the season at a time when he was playing so well.
‘Clearly his health and fitness is now our priority and we will be making sure he gets our total support during the coming period.’
Lennon reported some better news on the injury front, however, with Joe Ledley recovering from an eye cut and Gary Hooper recovering from a groin strain. Kris Commons and Glenn Loovens are also back in full training and are expected to face Dundee United on Saturday.
Daniel Majstorovic, meanwhile, restarts full training next week and could be fit to face St Mirren on January 21.