Celtic boss sets training timeline for long-term injury absentee Karamoko Dembelé

By Euan Davidson

January 28, 2022

Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou has offered an update on long-term injury absentee Karamoko Dembelé.

Karamoko, known as something of a wonderkid since joining Celtic, was impressive in pre-season displays. That is, until he was injured in a game against Bristol City. It didn’t seem too serious at the time. However, it’s waylaid his progress, and he hasn’t featured for any Celtic team this season.

Postecoglou, though, says there’s light at the end of the tunnel. He expects Karamoko Dembelé to return to training as early as next week.

Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

The winger, who has been on the cusp of breaking through for some time, enjoyed some excellent performances late in the season. He had a particularly good game against St Johnstone, under the auspices of John Kennedy. That momentum followed into the pre-season, where Ange appeared to like what he was seeing from Karamoko Dembelé.

Then, injury disrupted his progress.

Young Karamoko had to have surgery on his ankle in the Autumn of 2021, following “complications” with his rehab. That set him back further than expected. But Ange Postecoglou believes there’s an imminent return in place for Karamoko, at least in terms of training.

Ange said [Go Radio]: “He’s had a couple of little setbacks, so we’re thinking maybe next week he’ll start training with the group.

“We’ll see. Obviously he’s another one who’s had a sort of, lot of injuries and disruptions in the first half of the year. So we’ll just give him a chance to get himself fit.”

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Ange Postecoglou sets training timeline for Karamoko Dembelé, another talent who could be useful for Celtic this season

It was such a shame, the way Karamoko Dembelé was injured in pre-season. He had literally just explained how he was enjoying his football again, under a new manager in Ange Postecoglou.

As we’ve seen, the Greek-Aussie boss has absolutely no issue bringing youngsters into the fold. Owen Moffat, Dane Murray, Adam Montgomery and Joey Dawson have all featured at some stage this season.

The rapid, dynamic and technically gifted Karamoko Dembelé would surely have played by now. Or at the very least, could’ve been loaned out to develop. So, like any injury, it was a real shame. This one, though, felt particularly cruel at the time.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

If he’s one week from training with the full first-team, he’s still a wee way off any first-team involvement. However, there’s every reason to believe he could be gently phased in with a B Team appearance or two first. That could be a great way to reintroduce the undoubtedly talented winger.

He also needs his contract sorted out. Ange Postecoglou obviously rates him, his long-term future needs to be assessed.

For now though, this is a win. Celtic fans are dying to see Karamoko Dembelé fulfil his undoubted potential.

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