Hammond made unforgivable Celtic transfer blunder with "extremely dangerous" sensation – opinion
Celtic’s defensive record this season, to put it kindly, has been absolutely shocking.
They have already conceded 13 goals in the Scottish Premiership, a tally that eclipses their title rivals Rangers by ten.
Clearly, the reason why they’re so far behind the Gers is sticking out like a sore thumb.
If Neil Lennon can’t find a way to address the defensive issues plaguing his backline then Steven Gerrard’s men will run away with the SPFL title.
Considering Celtic have desires of winning a tenth crown in a row, this has not been the season they wanted.
However, could it have been easier? Quite possibly, but after Nick Hammond’s colossal transfer blunder earlier this year we will never know.
One of the biggest issues in Lennon’s side has been at right-back with Jeremie Frimpong.
The former Manchester City youngster was excellent last season and earned considerable praise, especially from Lennon. “He’s one of the best kids I’ve ever seen,” remarked the Celtic boss in 2019.
Unfortunately, it hasn’t quite happened for Frimpong in 2020/21.
Against Hibernian the 19-year-old was pretty dismal, losing possession 18 times and completing just one tackle. On top of that, he didn’t produce much in the final third, failing to put in a single accurate cross.
Why, therefore, is this relevant to the transfer market? Well, the Hoops were unable to bring in highly-rated teenager Brandon Soppy last January.
French press (via The Sun) linked the right-back with a move to Parkhead but nothing materialised. Since then, Soppy has become not just one of the best young defenders in Europe, but one of the best young players overall.
For 18-year-old’s in Europe’s top five leagues, the Rennes defender was ranked third on WhoScored’s average ratings before the international break.
On top of that, Soppy is still as much a threat going forward as the current Celtic full-back is, performing at least one successful dribble each outing. Football Talent Scout described the qualities of the teenage sensation, summarising them by saying: “he is extremely dangerous on the counter thanks to his pace and acceleration.”
Soppy is already performing at a particularly high standard in one of the best leagues in Europe and not just have Celtic missed out on one of the continent’s hottest properties, but they have also missed out on the inevitable re-sale value they could have recouped.
This has been a disaster all round, especially when you consider – excuse the pun – Celtic’s soppy defensive record.
In other news, check out how Celtic can FINALLY replace Scott Sinclair…
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Source: Football – Football Fan Cast