Celtic are still yet to confirm the signing of Jonathan Afolabi from Southampton.
The highly rated 19-year-old joined the Hoops at the weekend after leaving the Premier League club. The majority of major outlets reported the news, including the BBC, while manager Neil Lennon also confirmed the deal.
“He’s here,” Lennon told the Scottish Sun. “He’s a young lad from Southampton, we’ve signed him on a free transfer and he’s one for development.
“I think it’s a two-year deal.”
However, despite that pretty conclusive evidence that the deal is done, Celtic are still to announce Afolabi as one of their own.
Why haven’t Celtic confirmed the Afolabi deal?
There are a few reasons why Celtic may not yet have confirmed the deal for the Ireland youth international.
They may feel that they didn’t have to do so. Lennon had already confirmed the deal so why should the club do likewise? Or they may have felt that the signing of a youth player didn’t warrant the full announcement treatment. That seems a bit off though.
Just last month the club put out lengthy statements for the two signings of youth players – Leo Hjelde and Tobi Oluwayemi. So for them to not announce Afolabi doesn’t seem quite right.
Of course the deal may not be totally concluded yet and Lennon may have spoken slightly prematurely. But again that would paint a worrying picture.
The final, more cynical, explanation is that Celtic are holding off the announcement until later on in the window in an effort to appease fans. They may hold off confirming Afolabi until deadline day to make it seem like they’ve done more business than is actually the case.
Of course that’s a very cynical viewpoint. But with the way Celtic are at present can you really blame us?