Sometimes agents can put players into a sticky situation, and it wouldn’t be surprising if Vakoun Bayo can count himself as one of those players.
The Ivorian left Parkhead this summer to sign for Ligue 2 side Toulouse on a season-long loan deal. The idea being that, if he impresses in France, he could potentially come back to Glasgow and make his mark next season.
However, somebody clearly forgot to tell his agent, Mohamed Sissoko. His client is only in France temporarily, but it appears Sissoko thinks that it’s a permanent deal.
Or at least that’s what you would think if you saw his latest comments. Indeed, Sissoko has appeared to blame Celtic manager Neil Lennon for how poor a time Bayo has had of it in the last 12-18 months.
As quoted by the Daily Record, Sissoko said: “The change of manager at Celtic made it complicated for him because it wasn’t the current manager who signed him. That’s the only reason he didn’t play. But everyone else at Celtic was unanimous in praising his qualities.
“He has scored goals in Ivory Coast and in Slovakia and he was signed by Brendan Rodgers, but unfortunately he left a short time later. Therefore, his playing time was reduced to nothing.
“He knows how to score goals. He is a proper No.9 and can play in a partnership or on his own. If Toulouse use him properly, he will do very well.”
How does Bayo explain such nonsense to the manager?
So to sum up, his agent believes that it’s Neil Lennon’s fault that Bayo hasn’t made it at Celtic so far.
We can all argue whether the Ivorian was given the opportunities he perhaps deserved last season. However, it doesn’t matter whether Lennon should’ve played him more or not. It’s not something your agent should be hitting out with.
This is supposed to be a time for Bayo to focus and concentrate on bagging upwards of 20 goals for Toulouse. He doesn’t need to sit and see his agent blaming the manager of the club he remains contracted to for his lack of game-time.
It’s mind-boggling that Sissoko feels this is the best way to build up his client. If Bayo is to have a future at Parkhead, comments like these are aspects he shouldn’t need to deal with. He’ll have it hard enough when he returns given the level of competition here.
Lennon would have a right to bring this up with Bayo and ask his own view on it. After all, what’s to stop the manager from wondering whether these comments have come directly from the player? There’s no solid evidence of that, but there is every possibility.
Bayo’s agent has just put him into a situation he really could’ve avoided. For now, he’ll have to focus on scoring regularly and standing out for Toulouse.
In the meantime, the Ivorian has to make sure his agent keeps his mouth shut if he still wants to make it in Glasgow.