Karamoko Dembele update after youngster drops out of Celtic squads

By John McGinley

April 8, 2022

Celtic manager Ange Postecoglou has been discussing Karamoko Dembele’s situation after the youngster became a notable absentee of recent matchday squads.

Dembele returned from injury earlier this year and was regularly making the bench throughout February and the first half of March.

However, after a cameo appearance against Dundee United in the quarter-finals of the Scottish Cup, he’s since dropped out of contention again.

Thankfully he’s been able to get regular minutes for Celtic B and that’s where Ange suggests he’ll continue to be used for now even if he’s training every day with the first-team group at Lennoxtown.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

The manager said in a press conference today [Celtic YouTube]: “Luckily with him, we can get him some game time in the B team. Johnny Kenny is another one. They’re training with us every day but, as I said, training’s super competitive. We’ve got 26 or 27 players who all want to be not just part of the first team but part of the squad on the weekend and we’ve got some fantastic players missing out on the squad.

“Whether it’s Karamoko or anyone else in this group, the only way of thinking that they can go with is to just be ready, train hard every day and be ready. I don’t know whether he’ll be involved. I don’t know about any players. What we do as we approach every game is try and select the team and squad that I think will get the job done for us.

“We do that then we analyse it and we do the same thing the following week. All the players every day are in front of me and have an opportunity to show the best they can be and then it’s up to me to make those decisions.

“So, as I say, with Karamoko he’s training with us every day. It’s great he can play with the B team, they’ve got some good games coming up tomorrow and then Tuesday. Johnny Kenny is in a similar boat so with that game time it gives them another opportunity to be ready if the opportunity arises.”

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I don’t think there’s any controversy here. If Dembele was good enough to be making the Celtic squads on a weekly basis, he would be. We have to trust Ange on that.

Still, with his contract running out and the youngster still having not made a single start for the Bhoys, it is natural that fans would be curious about his situation.

It sounds like Postecoglou has at least got a keen eye on his progress and knows exactly where he stands with regards to featuring for the senior side. That’s all we can ask for. The rest is up to the player himself.

In other news, SPFL lay groundwork for controversial post-split fixtures as Celtic wait on ‘slight delay’.