In 2017 Brendan Rodgers spent most of the summer denying that he wanted to add to his striking options that already boasted Moussa Dembele and Leigh Griffiths.
However, when deadline day came around, little known 19-year-old Odsonne Edouard arrived at Parkhead on a season-long loan from PSG.
Edouard, now 20, found himself in the starting XI against Hamilton a week later and fought valiantly for the position as Rodgers’ lone striker.
With Griffiths suffering a calf injury and Dembele starting the season under a cloud with a hamstring injury, following intense transfer speculation, Edouard was given opportunities to prove himself, that he took with both hands.
The Frenchman impressed so much that Brendan Rodgers has persuaded chief executive Peter Lawwell to loosen the purse strings and fork out around £8 million to make the move permanent. This will blow Celtic’s previous record out of the water, the £6 million sum paid for Chris Sutton in 2000 and John Hartson a year later.
In Edouard, Rodgers believes that he is securing a young striker with an incredibly high ceiling, that he can improve and turn into a truly top striker.
In an ideal world this would be Celtic securing their centre forward for the next ten years, however, the Hoops’ manager will know that if he can improve Edouard sufficiently, Celtic will look to make a significant profit on the £8 million outlay.
21-year-old Dembele is persistently linked with a move away, and signing Edouard could free Lawwell to cash in on arguably Celtic’s most valuable asset.
Improving on six trophies in two years
Despite securing the double-treble, Celtic’s Scottish Premiership campaign last season fell short of the remarkably high standards set the year before. In order to progress, money must be spent to improve the squad.
Whilst Tom Rogic and Kris Ajer signed new long-term contracts in May, question marks remain over the futures of the likes of Kieran Tierney and Moussa Dembele. While Stuart Armstrong looks likely to leave Parkhead this summer with several English clubs interested.
Odsonne Edouard’s superb winning goal in Celtic’s 3-2 win at Ibrox back in March won him many admirers at Celtic and even more after scoring a brace when the Hoops battered Rangers 5-0 when they met again in April.
Supporters will be pleased that Rodgers is being backed financially to bring in one of the most talented young strikers he’s ever worked with but will hope that this isn’t their last big signing of the summer transfer window.
Where the move leaves Scotland star Leigh Griffiths, remains to be seen.
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