The last 24 hours have sparked the first ever genuine news about Moussa Dembele leaving Celtic. The French striker has been subject of continuous rumours since the day he scored his first Celtic goal, a match winner against Astana in the Champions League qualifiers two years ago.
He’s had injuries, he’s scored goals and he is an awesome player. The truth is he was always going to leave and now that the Celtic failed to secure a Champions League group stage slot for the first time since he arrived, discussions are going on about a potential move.
What wasn’t clarified was whether Celtic were still in with a chance of retaining the player’s services on an improved deal. All the stories so far have been about interest from France and Germany.
Brendan Rodgers confirmed there was interest, but no formal bids. He also confirmed that work was still being done to replenish and improve the squad.
If Dembele does go, it will be a huge blow. Injuries aside, he is a brilliant player and one we need for Europe.
With the club shelling out a record fee for Odsonne Edouard though, it was something that was more than likely to happen within the next twelve months. It would seem that exiting the Champions League has perhaps brought that situation about sooner.
I hold no grudges if Moussa moves on. He’s remained loyal to the team and provided some exciting moments.
With two years left on his contract and a good record at Celtic behind him we are sure to get a decent price for him. The question now is what the club do with that money.
We would be down to two recognised strikers. At the very least we need three though with injuries and the occasional two-up-top scenario we may need four in total.
That doesn’t solve our other personnel issues. The situation around Dedryck Boyata has yet to be made clear.
Staying or going? Who the hell knows!
The Belgian was subjected to booing from sections of the Celtic support on Sunday. The Green Brigade in particular making their feelings known with an audio-visual display.
What cannot be denied is that you could not fail to see this coming. After the events of the last few weeks and the club’s failure to put a lid on it properly, the boos from the stands were on the cards.
The impression that Boyata would never wear the Hoops again was very strong. So to throw him back into the team, albeit among a defensive injury crisis, was going to draw anger from the supporters.
I don’t blame people for that. I’m not saying I would have booed the guy myself, but I totally get why people did.
Celtic should have seen this coming and dealt with it accordingly, but they didn’t. Brendan even stated that he understood the negative sentiment bu the fans.
Which of course he had to because he’s played a vocal part in the ongoing club drama with his comments over the John McGinn saga. That’s just another part of a summer of discontent.
Now with Dembele looking to be on his way out, things don’t look great. This is all self-inflicted.
We’re one day away from learning our European fate and two days from the closure of the transfer window. We have yet to show any real intent on either front.
Let’s hope it all doesn’t end in a pile of misery. That would be the perfect invitation to those around us.