Celtic striker Jonathan Afolabi has stated his belief that timing stopped him from being allowed to make an impact at Parkhead.
The Irishman completed a move to Dunfermline Athletic until the end of the season earlier on this week. The deal sees him drop down to the Championship having yet to have made a single matchday squad under Neil Lennon this season.
That was despite the fact that Lenny described him as “on the cusp” of first-team football when he first arrived in the summer from Southampton (Sky Sports).
And speaking in his first presser since signing for the club, Afolabi explained why he didn’t manage to break through in his first five months at the club.
“It was a matter of timing for me. If the timing was right, and circumstances right, then I could have got a chance at Celtic, but they are doing very well at the moment.
“There is a lot of responsibility playing at Celtic. They basically need to win every game they play and the fans expect that from them.
“It’s good to be part of a club with those expectations and demands.”
Afolabi has made a brilliant choice with Pars move
Due to Celtic coming out of the Reserve League this year, it’s fair to say that the development squad hasn’t been playing too many competitive games. It’s barely given us a chance to hear about Afolabi’s progress outside of challenge matches and some cup games.
Moving to Dunfermline, a team still challenging from promotion from the Championship, is a shrewd move. The Republic of Ireland youngster will be joining a club who are under pressure to keep winning between now and the end of the season.
It will also give him a chance to potentially strike up a partnership with Kevin Nisbet. The Dunfermline number 15 has managed to score 21 goals in 28 games this season (Transfermarkt). That would most certainly be an intriguing partnership.
His decision to go to Dunfermline also gives us a chance to see where Afolabi is truly at. Whilst youth football is all well and good, the striker hasn’t played a single game of senior football in the past. It’s unknown territory for him.
If he is to come back to Parkhead in the summer and start making an impact, then he’s going to have to seriously rip it up at that level.
Hopefully, he gets plenty of goals to his name between now and the end of the season. Bagging the strikes that see Dunfermline win promotion would certainly catch the eye of Lennon.