Jackie McNamara lauds the Celtic player 'different from the rest'

By Euan Davidson

March 18, 2022

Celtic legend Jackie McNamara is more than impressed with what he’s seen from Greek striker Giorgos Giakoumakis, saying he’s “different from the rest”.

McNamara, who played with a range of excellent Celtic strikers, noted the instinct Giakoumakis has, saying that he’s better without having to think too much.

That kind of natural, predatory penalty box nous has been a major boost to Celtic, especially in 2022 when we’ve lacked Kyogo, Albian Ajeti and, at times, Daizen Maeda. 8 of his 9 goals have come since the turn of the year, having overcome injury issues before and after arriving at Celtic Park.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Speaking exclusively to 67 Hail Hail, McNamara said of Giakoumakis: “I think he’s different from the rest.

“I quite like him, he’s got a physical presence. He’s more instinctive, he’s had a few chances where he’s had time to think about it. The Alloa game, he took an extra touch, and the defender’s got back. [But] in that game, he had a really good finish there.

“When he’s doing it there without actually thinking about it, he’s better.

“I think he’s improving, I don’t think – you go all through all his goals, 9 of them – not a lot of them have been ‘classic’ goals, but there’s been a couple of good ones in there.

“But I think they’ve been very important ones.”

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Jackie McNamara says Giorgos Giakoumakis gives Celtic something ‘different’

Hard to fault Jackie McNamara’s logic here.

Giakoumakis has been crucial to Celtic, timing his resurgence just right to step up in Kyogo’s absence. Though goals are being spread very well across the whole squad, it’s not controversial to suggest we need a reliable, prolific scoring option.

The striker, who was recalled to the Greece squad this week, has been just that.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Fine, most of his goals are from very close range, and sometimes very scrappy. But so what? We 100% need that, especially in games where we have lots of opportunities, but are struggling to find a way. With a physical presence that sets him apart aerially, and a dynamite first-touch, the guy’s an asset.

Much was written about him in the first half of his maiden season with Celtic. In fact, he was written off in many quarters. A guy who, for £2.5m, was at one point seen as a waste of many, who’s now seen as a total bargain.

It’s been great seeing him blossom as a real force for Celtic.

As Jackie McNamara says, he does indeed give us something different.

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