Former Scotland defender Alan Hutton has revealed his surprise at how things have worked out for Stoke City loanee Moritz Bauer this season after it was reported that Celtic boss Neil Lennon has decided not to sign him permanently in the summer.
The Austrian full-back joined the Scottish giants on a season-long loan deal in August but after being involved early on has fallen out of favour at the club – making just 13 appearances this term.
The 28-year-old has fallen down the pecking order at Celtic Park, with Jeremie Frimpong and Hatem Abd Elhamed seemingly ahead of him, while the shift to a 3-5-2 has also impacted his opportunities.
It was reported earlier this month that Lennon had decided against signing Bauer on a permanent deal and was instead willing to let him return to Stoke this summer.
Hutton faced off against the right-back on a number of occasions in English football and, speaking to Football Insider, revealed his surprise at the fact that things had not worked out for Bauer at the Scottish club.
He said: “Bauer, obviously great experience, I played against him and thought he was quick.
“He’s got good attributes to be a good full-back and it just seems that Frimpong and people like that have come in and taken his place.
“He’s obviously fell right down the pecking order. These are things that happen at clubs, you go with the best intentions: ‘I’m going to go there on loan, I’m going to play every game, play well and I’m going to sign.’ Sometimes it just doesn’t work out.”
Celtic look on course to secure yet another SPFL title this season and are 13 points ahead of second-place Rangers after 30 games, while the Potters sit just three points above the relegation zone.
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You can see where Hutton is coming from here, the Austrian has many of the attributes you’d look for in a full-back and is someone that you felt could have been a success for Celtic.
As it is, he didn’t quite make enough of an impact and it seems as if he will be returning to the Bet 365 this summer.
It is going to be very interesting to see what the future holds now for Bauer and whether he has a future at Stoke or will move on elsewhere when the transfer window opens.