Giakoumakis Has His First Champions League Goal For Celtic. It Won’t Be His Last.

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Strikers trade on their confidence, and the confidence of Giorgios Giakoumakis is sky-high at the moment and rising with every game he plays in our forward line. He is a special footballer. Not a dazzling skill, but brilliant at the thing he most needs to do well.

Which, for a striker, is putting the ball in the back of the net.

He grows in stature as his confidence swells.

It will not be long before the stories start in earnest about interest from England; the player is happy at Parkhead but that won’t stop those who feed the rumour mill. He is starting to resemble the kind of player who attracts clubs in the big leagues. It is a wonder that they did not spot him when he was doing it in Holland.

I have, on occasion, marvelled at that.

To be top scorer in a league where Ajax, Feynoord and PSV frequently sell top players for tens of millions of pounds isn’t a small thing. To do it with a side that finishes bottom of the league is even more remarkable.

Yet no one major club came sniffing around for him. Even when he signed for Celtic, there was some sneering in our media. His scoring record before Holland was not setting the world on fire. So there was some discussion as to whether or not he was a “one season wonder” and that it was this, perhaps, which put off the sides in the Big Five.

Had he been that little bit more clinical in the Champions League they would all know his name by now. He has his first goal in that tournament. It will not be his last. This is a player who was born for the European stage. He will certainly be a huge player for us when, next season, we venture onto distant shores.

At that point, everything opens up for him.

Part of it, of course, is that he’s at a club where he’s admired and respected and where, in the stands, he’s loved. He’s got his own song, he wears an iconic number and he’s in what I reckon has to be the form of his career under a manager whose style fits him like a glove.

What a signing he has been for us.

What a massive player he looks set to be for many years to come.

This is just the start of his European scoring adventure.

There is plenty more to come.

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