Celtic youngster given late 2021 opportunity by Ange shares family response to dramatic miss

By Euan Davidson

January 8, 2022

Joey Dawson almost had the perfect debut for Celtic when he came on against St Johnstone.

And now, he’s discussed how his family felt about the chance he had that was cleared off the cross-line. Dawson impressed on his first-team debut, amidst a raft of injuries in attacking positions.

There was undeniably huge concern when Kyogo pulled up lame early into the game in Perth. But Dawson, signed from Scunthorpe United in the summer [Celtic FC], held the ball up well, got into encouraging positions and of course, nearly capped his afternoon with a smart finish.

Photo by James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images

Only to see the ball swiped off the line. It would’ve been the ideal first showing for Celtic, and Shaw says his family were desperate to see the ball hit the back of the net. Alas, it wasn’t to be; Dawson’s deft chip didn’t quite make it 4-1 to the Bhoys.

Dawson, speaking to Celtic’s in-house media, said [Celtic FC]: “All my family said they were jumping up and nearly banging their heads on the ceiling when they saw the ball go over him – but then it was cleared off the line.”

On making his first-team debut, Shaw reflected:

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“It’s a big confidence booster as well, knowing that the manager put his trust in you for the game. It makes you want it more. I’ve just got to keep working hard and keep scoring goals for the B team.”

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The future looks good for Celtic; Dawson is another high-potential talent

If it wasn’t obvious enough already, Celtic have some really good talents coming through, Dawson included.

There’s a really strong combination of players brought in specifically to develop in the B Team, and talents who’ve made it through the Celtic Academy. The B Team experiment has been an unqualified success so far, and Dawson’s frame and confidence make him a decent candidate for more first-team appearances in the future.

It’s not just him; Johnny Kenny, if he is signed for the B Team, looks a real talent. Bosun Lawal, brought in from Watford, is accomplished and technically proficient. Tobi Oluwayemi, from the Spurs Academy, has a very high ceiling.

Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Add in Dawson and there are four players from the Academy who could join the first-team squad before too long. Postecoglou has already said he wants to bring youth players up to the main squad every year. It sounded ambitious when he said it, but it doesn’t seem beyond the realms of possibility for 22-23.

In any case, Dawson was so close to causing a real family ruckus. He’ll be desperate to get that first goal; although the Dawson household may want to strengthen their ceiling just in case.

Read more: Chris Sutton backs Celtic Academy graduate who has “unbelievable ability”