Celtic’s Big Vote Of Confidence In Stephen Welsh Is Worth Taking Notice Of.

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Celtic has once again rejected moves for our young centre back Stephen Welsh. This is, I think, the third window where this has happened and I think it represents a huge vote of confidence in this player by the coaching staff at Celtic Park.

The very fact that we’re constantly beating off interest for him tells you that he’s rated, and that he’s had offers from Italy tells you how highly. Welsh is one of those players who I think is much maligned and misunderstood by a section of our support. The section which seems to turn on a lot of our players instead of letting them settle down.

Welsh was the one bright spark in the Neil Lennon final campaign.

When you think of the money we squandered on Shane Duffy, this kid came in and strolled through the detritus of that season and was one the one positive who came out of it.

He can consider himself very unlucky that Ange’s high tempo game called for a different kind of defender, and if he’s had some difficulty adjusting to it, well that’s just a consequence of how tough it is to play in this system, as Ange pointed out the other day.

So with the clock ticking down it looks as if Welsh will stay; this gives us four good quality centre backs at the club and ameliorates the need for any backup option to be signed.

This was doubtless an area Ange would have been thinking about as the window wound down.

Welsh is a good young talent, and I expect to see him get games before the season ends.

He wants to play first team football, and normally that’d be all the reason in the world to give him a loan move, but that Celtic is resisting it tells you how important they consider him to be … and I think Stephen Welsh can take a lot of heart from that.

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  • Benjamin says:

    James, I hope you’re right that he gets some minutes before the season is over. He desperately needs to get some playing time for his own development. If I was calling the shots at Celtic Park (and it’s a good thing I’m not! LOL), I would have sent him out for a 6 month loan to get some minutes under his belt before next season’s Champions League.

    What I’m seeing is that Welsh is 4th in the pecking order right now at CB, and we also have Iwata who played there quite a bit in Japan. So 5 players who’ve regularly played the position at a high level. Alastair Johnston also grew up playing CB and has said he’s comfortable there if needed – though he’d never play there for Celtic in anything less than emergency situations. But crucially for me, when everyone is healthy and fit, Ange almost never rotates 4 key players – Hart, CCV, Starfelt, and McGregor. Maybe Kobayashi replaces Starfelt in that mix, but I can’t see Ange starting any sort of weekly rotation at CB unless there is an issue with injury or fitness. If that’s the right read, it’s unlikely Welsh will even make the substitutes bench most weeks for the remainder of the season. That seems like a waste of his talent, and both Celtic & Welsh would benefit if he went on a short term development loan just to get minutes.

  • jrm63 says:

    He needs to play. They should have let him go

  • Kenny67 says:

    Stephen is a good young player but he isn’t at the level we need. He lacks physicality which has been proven on a number of occasions. He should move on to pastures new to develop his career with our thanks and best wishes. Hail Hail

  • Kevan McKeown says:

    Dont like tae sound harsh on the guy, tho wish ah shared your optimism. He doesnae lack heart, tho he can get caught out of position a bit often for me and his defendin in the box is suspect, especially at set peices. Shouldve been loaned out tae try and develop imo.

  • JimBhoy says:

    Would have had Welsh and Vata at Hibs for the remainder of the season. Looks like Nisbet will miss a month or two.

  • Tenaka Khan says:

    It’s obvious that Ange sees something in him when you look at what he turned down for him in the summer and then what he accepted for Giakoumakis. I wonder if he could be developed as a right back – Ange seems to like versatility.


    Plus he’s Scottish and Coached at the Club.
    Helps with the EUFA Cups squad eligibility regulations.

  • Gerrard Duffin says:

    Hope he and lawal get games

  • Duncan says:

    I think there is scope to develop Welsh as this combative defensive Midfielder most have been hankering for.
    He’s fully defensively aware,is strong in the challenge and is comfortable in possession getting up the Park.

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