For whatever reason, it didn’t work out for Lewis Morgan at Celtic.
The former St Mirren man would’ve hoped for a similar career trajectory to John McGinn. Starring for the Buddies, moving to a bigger Scottish club, then having Europe-wide fame. Yet, the Bhoys never seemed to know quite what to do with the winger.
At a time when Celtic had myriad wide options (stop laughing, at the back), Morgan just couldn’t get a regular run of games in his preferred position. During an injury crisis, he was used up front, or as a number 10, or basically wherever Brendan Rodgers or Neil Lennon could fit him.
Sadly, it didn’t work out. Yet, rather than letting that disappointment deter him, he’s used it as motivation. For glamorous MLS outfit Inter Miami, Morgan has been an absolute star [MLS Multiplex]. Under new boss Phil Neville, the ex-St Mirren man will be playing alongside Gonzalo Higuain [Inter Miami] and Blaise Matuidi [Guardian].
However, Morgan might be the Beckham-owned side’s most important player for the second consecutive season. He’s also aiming to get back in contention with the Steve Clarke’s Scotland side.
Lewis Morgan, MLS star, aiming for Scotland recall
In quotes via the Daily Record, Morgan said:
“Playing for your national team is the biggest honour a player can have and it’s definitely a goal I have to force myself back into that set-up.
“I know I’m more than capable of doing it. Last year was difficult, I was going to be involved in one of the camps but with travel and Covid restrictions it wasn’t viable, logistically.
“Johnny Russell at Sporting Kansas was in a similar position.”
It’s certainly not beyond the realms of possibility that Morgan could star for Scotland. An enterprising wide option for Steve Clarke’s men, he’s added goals to his game in the MLS. Having won Inter Miami’s Player of the Year (or ‘MVP’, as they call it in the States) [Inter Miami], we’ve seen Scottish players in North America win caps for the national team.
The aforementioned Johnny Russell is just one example.
Could Celtic live to rue selling Morgan?
Lewis Morgan left Celtic without a great deal of fanfare, yet it could be a decision Celtic have lived to regret already.
This season, we’ve missed out-and-out wingers. Elyounoussi and Forrest have struggled with injuries at various times, while Shved has been out on loan, and Jonny Hayes returned to Aberdeen. Scott Sinclair is at Preston North End. In short, we’ve lacked depth and variety in wide attacking positions.
It’s easy to look back with hindsight, but it feels like Lewis Morgan had more to offer. The first part of a wave of ex-Celts to join the MLS, we’ve seen Andrew Gutman, Cameron Harper and potentially Patryk Klimala seal deals to move to (arguably) more glamorous locales.
Maybe we missed a trick there, but Lewis Morgan won’t mind too much. The focus for him is getting into the Scotland squad and building on an already impressive CV in the MLS.