Posted on Monday, 31st December 2012 by admin
It’s the 1st of Janaury tomorrow which means a new year and far more importantly a new transfer window! Paul T looks at some players Celtic should consider selling during the window.
The post-Christmas tradition of stores offering massive discounts to get rid of overstocked goods may be happening earlier than ever in these austere times, however in football terms the January transfer window ensures that clubs know exactly when & for how long their buying & selling can happen.
After a very active summer window, Celtic’s squad is arguably at its’ strongest in some years; however, most supporters would agree that (a) it continues to lack quality & strength in depth in certain areas and (b) there are a number of remaining squad members who continue to add very little tangibly to the first team. The undernoted are players who I believe fall into the latter category & could be sold or released without damaging the momentum or overall strength of the first-team squad, freeing-up cash to spend on better-quality replacements where required, who could in turn genuinely challenge for places in the first team.
For the purposes of this article I’ve excluded the possibility of the club allowing any of our current first team regulars to leave- despite the best efforts of the Scottish press, I’m fairly convinced that only a ridiculous, Sky-funded EPL silly money bid will persuade Celtic to let anyone of importance to the team leave during this transfer window, whilst we remain the only club in Britain still in all 4 competitions we started in.
Lukasz Zaluska: popular with the supporters, but never going to be a first-choice goalkeeper at Celtic. With the ongoing rise of big Fraser, Zaluska seems destined to continue in his role of perpetual sub, with the occasional game in the early rounds of domestic Cup competitions. With the arrival in the summer of Slovakian international Lubos Kamenar as additional goalkeeping cover, it may be time to let the big Pole go & consider pursuing longer-term options.
Thomas Rogne: frustrating player, full of promise & has good pace, but incredibly injury-prone. The arrival of Efe Ambrose, & the speed of which he & Kelvin Wilson have put together what looks like a very strong central defensive partnership, looks like limiting Rogne’s chances for the foreseeable future. His departure would definitely leave us short of cover in central defence, hence an experienced & durable replacement (or two) is absolutely essential.
Paddy McCourt: despite his enduring popularity with many fans, & his undeniable exciting skill when at his best, its’ definitely fair to say we haven’t seen much of a positive contribution from Paddy over the last few seasons. Used sparingly & mainly as an impact substitution, but rarely now seems to have that desired game-changing influence when he appears. Unlikely to be anywhere near our starting XI when most key players are fit. With McGeoch & Ibrahim also knocking on the door, Paddy looks vulnerable. Would be a tremendous asset to a team at the right level but increasingly looking lost at Celtic.
Miku: currently on-loan with us until the end of the season, however its’ hard to see where he will get many opportunities to play barring a major injury crisis. The emergence over recent weeks of Lassad as a genuine option up front, as well as the need to keep nurturing the emerging talent of Tony Watt, seems to suggest that Miku will be 5th or 6th-choice striker when Tony Stokes comes back.
Mo Bangura: sometimes a signing just doesn’t work out at a club, no matter how talented the player is. The YouTube Bangura scores incredible goals & seems to have pace & skill in abundance; the version we have seen at Celtic is a poor imitation of that guy. Most fans have given him the benefit of the doubt purely because of the ‘highly rated by Henrik’ tag he arrived with, but very few of us have seen anything to justify such high praise. Time to call it quits and, if necessary, cut our losses.
Andre Blackman: a surprise signing last year, he has been relatively anonymous other than his fairly disastrous debut v Aberdeen at Pittodrie. Still at ICT until January, despite some strange rumours about off-field misdemeanours, however highly unlikely to make any impact on the first team on his return. With Izzy, Matthews & Mulgrew, plus the emergence of Joe Chalmers at LB, we seem well covered there.
Daryl Murphy: on loan for the season (again) at Ipswich, doing a permanent deal for the player seems the right thing to do as he is clearly surplus to requirements at Celtic Park.
Happy to hear your thoughts on the above list- right, wrong, too many, too few?
You can follow the author on Twitter – @pault1888