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Celtic And Norwich Have The Same Decisions To Make On Idah And Johnston Respectively.

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Earlier on, I wrote about the opportunity which has arisen for Bosun Lawal and how all that I hear about him suggests that the hype is not just that, but that we have a right good player coming back to the club. He is not the only Celtic youth player coming back to the club soon after a short spell away. Mikey Johnston is on his way back too.

Mikey has had a good time of it at West Brom. They want to keep him.

A lot of their fans want to keep him as well. It may prove difficult to do. As with the Adam Idah situation which we face, they didn’t get a right-to-buy inserted into the deal, and that means that, like Norwich, we don’t have to make it easy for them if we don’t want to do business.

There are reports today that we’d consider using Mikey Johnston as a makeweight in a future deal for Adam Idah; this is interesting. There are reports today that we’ve slapped a £6 million price tag on the head of Mikey; they appear to have come from Football Insider and so to say that I take them with a pinch of salt is an understatement.

It would be ironic if this was true. Because both clubs are essentially in the same boat here. We each have a talented player on our hands but one who has failed to impress the home support. It would be strange indeed if we both got to the bottom of that by trading up.

How many clubs are really interested in Idah? More, I suspect, than before his loan to Celtic. We gave him a platform and he made the most of it. There will definitely be teams out there who might consider him a reasonable target.

Equally, it’s obvious that if there are a couple of clubs on the hunt whereas Mikey is concerned that we have a chance of getting a good fee if that’s what we’re after. The Norwich story does sound suspect because if their new boss hasn’t made a decision on the players at the club how can we believe that he has made the call on who he wants to bring in?

There’s a lot going on out there in the football world, so right now we can only focus on what’s going on in our own house, and for the moment Mikey Johnston is one of our players. After his successful spell at West Brom it was always likely that Rodgers would want another look at him, and this will be especially true considering the issues we’ve had on the left of the pitch.

If Rodgers thinks he can do us a job there, that’s another player in another key position, where we would otherwise have had to spend. Some will say this is “doing stuff on the cheap” just as some will make the same point about my suggestion this morning that Lawal get promoted to the first team squad.

The thing is, only a stupid club spends where it doesn’t have to.

The allegation has long been that we do not give our young players a chance and that there is no pathway for them, that we would rather spend on new players than give our own prospects a go. It’s nonsense, as is readily apparent to anyone who thinks it through.

When you are doing a rebuild there are certain areas you have to prioritise; we’ve already heard that Rodgers has five priority signings; a keeper, a centre back, a left back, a central midfielder and a striker.

Those are where the proper money needs to be spent. After we’ve covered those bases we can focus on the less essential areas of the team.

I have reservations about Mikey Johnston which I’ve talked about many times on this site. He can look like a world beater in one game and then you don’t see anything from him for weeks. Part of that might be that he doesn’t get a run in the team in which to prove himself indispensable. There is no question that he is talented, and that has never been in question … but Mikey seems to do best when there is no pressure on him, and that could be a killer.

Rodgers wants to know what he’s learned being away, and so he will take his time and have a look, just as we expect the Norwich boss to do with Idah, who played a blinder yesterday in front of the media when he was asked about coming back to Celtic.

He didn’t rule it out. He spoke highly about our club.

But he did it in the context of respecting the club he’s contracted to and was observant of their fans and their incoming boss. Perfect. He’s a class act off the field as well as on it. He’s a sensible, grounded lad and that makes it all the more likely that he’s got a big future in the game.

Mikey Johnston will have a career in the game too. Will it be at Celtic Park?

Will either of them be at Celtic Park?

That, and much else, will be decided in the next six weeks.

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0 comments

  • JimBhoy says:

    It’s been said before mental strength is needed to perform consistently at a club like Celtic especially forward thinking players.
    I think Mikey should move on find his level and hopefully we pick up £5m for him.
    Idah no idea he can get a move in England and add 20k a week to his sal. Celtic can’t compare with that. Good investment in miovski imo.

  • Stevie Bhoy says:

    Just offer Norwich Johnston for Idah. Done

  • Mark Rouse says:

    Mikey Johnston can’t handle the pressure of playing for Celtic. Far too inconsistent and injury prone. He’s had numerous chances and the shirt is too big for him.

    • Jimmy says:

      Put perfectly by the guys above. Mikey will never make it at Celtic. West brom are skint so can’t spend big. Swap deal and everyone is happy.

  • Brattbakk says:

    I don’t want to be too harsh on Mikey but I can’t see it happening for him at Celtic, he’s had enough chances. I wish him all the best and any reasonable amount is a good deal for us. Straight swap would be great business

  • Matt says:

    I’ll probably get slaughtered for this but I wouldn’t sign Idah for £6m. I dont think he’s worth that. Mikey Johnston is finished at celtic, he needs to go to a new club for the sake of his career.

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