TROUBLED Celtic striker Leigh Griffiths was reported missing by concerned friends this week, it has emerged.

The 28-year-old will be out of football for personal reasons “for a little period of time” as he “seeks professional help,” revealed Hoops boss Brendan Rodgers on Wednesday.

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Pals of the footballer alerted police on Monday after the player went missing for a period of time.

He was later traced in Edinburgh City Centre.

A Police Scotland spokesman told the Evening Times: “Police were called at around 6.20pm to the Park Drive area, in Wallyford, on Monday, December 10 to a report of a concern for a person who was later found less than two hours later in Edinburgh City Centre.”

READ MORE: ​Senior Celtic players intervened to alert Brendan Rodgers to Leigh Griffiths' situation

Griffiths, who recently returned from illness and another calf injury, came off the bench in the 5-1 Ladbrokes Premiership win over Kilmarnock at the weekend, but is out of Celtic’s Europa League Group B clash with Salzburg at Parkhead on Thursday night.

Rodgers explained an incident with Griffiths brought the striker’s illness to a head when a number of senior players intervened in order to try and facilitate some help for the Scotland internationalist.

“A couple of the senior players rang me when I got to know about an incident that happened,” said Rodgers. “I was then able to act from there.”

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The Hoops boss also admitted Griffiths had been dealing with “a number of issues outside of the football environment.”

The Northern Irishman said: “Leigh will be taken out of football now for a little period of time.

“Leigh has had ongoing issues now for a number of months and he has done amazing to play to the level and score some of the goals he has.

“But he has reached the point where it is a struggle for him and we are going to give him all the professional help that he possibly needs to get himself into a good place again.

JOHN HARTSON: This is not about Leigh Griffiths the footballer - it's about the man and the rest of his life

“But in order to do that he needs to find a happiness.

“He is a father of five children, he is a great guy, but football and life is tough for him.

“We will seek the professional help. There will be an assessment of where he is at and there will be a plan in place to help him moving forward.

“We want to help him with that and we will let you know another time when he is back.”