Exciting Karamoko Dembele update as Ange confirms Celtic opportunity will come

By David Walton

March 1, 2022

Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou has confirmed that Karamoko Dembele will be given his first-team opportunity during the title run-in.

Dembele was a part of the pre-season squad in Wales before suffering a shocker of a challenge against Bristol City. The ankle injury led to him requiring surgery that would keep him out of action for the entire first half of the campaign.

The talented youngster has been on the bench in recent weeks and will be once more against St Mirren at Parkhead tomorrow.

Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

And speaking via Celtic TV, Ange has today confirmed that Karamoko will be handed his big opportunity at some stage between now and the summer:

“I hope so. With Karamoko he’s just been really unlucky with injuries. In pre-season I really was looking forward to working with him. People will remember he was on the end of a pretty unordinary tackle which really set him back. But he’s worked really hard to get his fitness back. He’s now available, we just haven’t found the right game to give him an opportunity, but he will get an opportunity between now and the end of the year absolutely.

“It’s also about futures and where they see their futures. I’ve said all along, for me, this football club is everything that a young player should want. Particularly at the moment – I really want to bring young players into the first-team and give them an opportunity.

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“With Karamoko he’s been in the squad the last couple of games. He’ll be in the squad tomorrow night. He’s obviously missed a lot of football as well so I’m really careful about when I want to put him in. But he’ll get an opportunity. He’s an exciting young player and the way we play should suit him so hopefully he has an impact and helps us.”

The big Karamoko Dembele contract question that Celtic boss will struggle to get past

For many it’s been a riddle as to why Dembele hasn’t seen more minutes. Some may believe that we’re making a mistake in not featuring him more regularly given the undoubted talent he has. After all, it wasn’t so long ago that the likes of Borussia Dortmund and Arsenal were reportedly keen on him [The Scottish Sun].

But that’s just the point. The potential transfer move that Karamoko could make tomorrow if he wished. He’s now into the final few months of his Celtic contract given it runs out in the summer of 2023 [Transfermarkt]. At the moment, he could leave at any stage as he’s free to speak to clubs about a pre-contract move.

That’s a situation Celtic will have been desperate to avoid. You can criticise the Celtic board for many things, but tying down their youngsters has always been a priority. Therefore, you can only be led to believe that Dembele hasn’t been welling to pen a new deal.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

It’s difficult to know what to make of Ange’s comments here. He states that he’ll only invest his time and opportunity in those who want to stay whilst acknowledging that Dembele will get a chance. Yet why bring the subject of commitment in the first place if it didn’t apply to the winger?

If Dembele has his sights set on a summer move, you couldn’t see Ange giving him minutes. However, at the moment, it still looks as though a firm decision has yet to be made. Perhaps that’s why Karamoko hasn’t been given more regular game-time in recent weeks.

It’s a question that will need to be answered at some stage. Dembele needs to give a final verdict on his long-term future. In the meantime, it looks as though a return to the first-team for the Lennoxtown graduate is on the cards.

In other news, Ange Postecoglou explains when he’ll make a final decision on Celtic star Giorgos Giakoumakis