Carl Starfelt tells Celtic support that he has "more to give"

By David Walton

September 13, 2021

Carl Starfelt has told the Celtic supporters that there’s more to come from him after a rollercoaster start to his Parkhead career.

Starfelt was signed from Rubin Kazan in a £4m deal back in July [The Herald]. However, it hasn’t been a smooth transition from Russia to Scotland for the Sweden international.

Despite half of his 10 appearances ending with clean sheets, there have been some concerning errors thrown into the mix. He didn’t look comfortable against the likes of Hearts or Jablonec in the early days of his Hoops career. More recently, he scored a comical own goal in the Netherlands against AZ Alkmaar.

Photo by Gavriil GrigorovTASS via Getty Images

However, there have also been more promising signs in recent matches. Starfelt was dominant at Ibrox before easing to a comfortable shutout against Ross County on Saturday. And ahead of Real Betis on Thursday night, Starfelt believes he can only get better in the coming weeks.

As quoted by the National, the centre-back said: “I feel like I have more to give. I feel like it’s getting better.

“I feel more secure for every game. I just need to keep working hard and hopefully I will only grow. Of course I know, I have played football for a long time and I know you will have difficult moments. But then every player will have difficult moments.

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“You’ve got to just push through them mentally and if you keep working hard it will turn around and that’s what I’m trying to do. I try to work hard every day and keep my confidence up and that’s what my focus is on.”

Starfelt has major acid test coming up in Celtic UEL fixtures

It’s always difficult to judge Celtic centre-backs when it comes to games such as County at Parkhead. A fixture in which they’re tested minimally and are expected to breeze through. To his credit, Starfelt managed to do that.

He should also be pleased with his performance in the derby two weeks ago in Govan. He helped put the shackles on Alfredo Morelos and Kemar Roofe. The Rangers duo didn’t get much joy throughout the 90 minutes, with only a set-piece goal undoing us on the day.

Yet you still don’t feel that Starfelt has had that breakthrough performance yet. A display that truly announces himself to the Celtic support as a dominant centre-back. He’s impressed in stages and concerned in stages. But we’re still waiting for that one 90-minute performance where we’re all wowed by what he produced.

Photo by Steve Welsh/Getty Images

Good thing then that we have a tough-looking trip to Real Betis coming up. The La Liga side will undoubtedly test the Celtic defence from all angles and demand that we’re switched on in order to bag a big result on the night.

Starfelt looks certain to start. He’s played in every one of our games since his debut at Tynecastle. The consistency in selection appears to be helping him to settle in Glasgow. But he’ll come up against his stiffest challenge yet on Thursday night.

If Celtic manage to get a win on Thursday, it’ll be partly because Starfelt has had a fine game. Let’s hope we’re talking about that very prospect come full-time.

In other news, Olivier Ntcham already impressing after playing first match since leaving Celtic