Celtic striker Patryk Klimala is answering critics back after Tam McManus claim

By David Walton

September 14, 2020

Patryk Klimala’s goal at the weekend didn’t just mark a return to goalscoring form – it also symbolised him answering his critics after Tam McManus’ premature claim.

Indeed, McManus certainly wasn’t dishing out praise to the Polish striker after Celtic’s 1-1 draw at Kilmarnock last month. Speaking to PLZ Soccer, the former Hibs man said: “Every Celtic fan would rather Leigh Griffiths coming off the bench than Patryk Klimala. I don’t think Klimala is the answer coming off the bench if Edouard has an off day.”

McManus is perfectly entitled to his opinion, but there’s no denying it was a slightly naive remark to make. Already, Poland under-21 striker Klimala is proving him wrong.

Patryk Klimala celebrates vs Ross County (Photo by Paul Campbell/Getty Images)

Klimala has now come on in each of Celtic’s last three domestic matches. He was given second-half appearances against Dundee United and Motherwell before Neil Lennon turned to him again in Dingwall.

Yet, whilst Klimala may only have netted in one out of those three matches, he’s been causing absolute havoc when game-time has come his way.

As well as his goal in Dingwall, Klimala managed to get into space that provided him with another big chance. Stat-tracking website WhoScored marked him as Celtic’s most influential sub too with a rating of 7.06 after being given the final half-hour.

Klimala building up a portfolio of decent cameos

But his impressive displays go back further than Saturday.

Against Motherwell before the international break, it was only after Klimala’s introduction at half-time that Celtic started carving open the Steelmen. His movement caused Steve Robinson’s side countless problems, and again he created two decent chances for himself.

Granted, his display at Tannadice the week before was short. He only came on for the remaining five minutes, yet he still managed to find the time to make an important run up the pitch that saw him go past two United defenders before being hauled to the deck and winning a vital free-kick.

Klimala in action at Tannadice / (Photo by Steve Welsh/Pool via Getty Images)

Ever since McManus’ claim that Klimala isn’t the answer off the bench, he’s been proving the pundit wrong in so many different ways as he continues to be a valuable option for the manager.

Of course, being a starter will be the Polish striker’s main goal in the long-term, but he can be delighted with his work in recent matches. He’s certainly making the right impression this season, and more minutes are sure to follow.

In other news, an English Premier League boss has stated that his Celtic-linked winger needs to leave the club.