It is probably a bit of a surprise that Olivier Ntcham is still a Celtic player at this moment in time. He was keen to move on from the club in the summer.
The likes of Marseille, Lyon and Porto were reportedly interested in the player, but for the moment he remains a Celtic.
That could change before the end of the transfer window, but it seems unlikely. Since Neil Lennon became manager, Ntcham has featured for the Hoops, but he has not been a first-team regular.
Didn’t play well in recent defeat
He did play in the 4-3 loss to Cluj, but he didn’t have his best game. However, few players covered themselves in glory that day.
However, Ntcham is too good to be jettisoned from the squad like Scott Sinclair seems to have been. Ntcham only played the last eight minutes of the 2-0 win over AIK.
He should return to the starting line-up though, for the game against Hearts on Sunday. It makes sense for him to replace Scott Brown in the side.
It is too much to expect Brown to play two games in a week at this stage of his career. Therefore, Ntcham is the natural replacement.
Should Ntcham run the midfield against the Tynecastle side, then he should be one of the first names on the team sheet for the Glasgow derby against Rangers next week.
Eager to make up for past performance
It is fair to say that the midfielder didn’t have the best of games at Ibrox in the 1-0 loss to Rangers in December. He will be eager to make up for that.
Midfield could well decide who wins the day in the derby. If Ntcham is on his game, he is more than capable of doing that for the Hoops.
However, he must impress against Hearts first. Should that be the case, then there is a real case for the player to be selected for Ibrox.