New Celtic signing Luca Connell insists he hasn’t come to the club to play second fiddle. The teenager switched crisis-hit Bolton Wanderers for the Scottish champions last week – signing a four-year deal.
Connell is only 18, and has played just a dozen senior matches in his short career. However, that hasn’t stopped him from making a bullish claim about getting into the Celtic first-team.
The Scottish Sun report the Irish youth international as saying: “I might have to be patient, because there are a lot of good players here.
“But I’m coming here to play, and I want to get straight into that first team as soon as I can.”
Connell’s game time may be limited
At the moment, Connell will probably be viewed as the club’s fifth or sixth choice midfielder. He’s gone into an area of the park where Celtic are very strong with the likes of Ryan Christie, Callum McGregor and Scott Brown likely to hold down places.
Nir Bitton is also an option while the trail seems to have gone cold on Olivier Ntcham’s potential departure from the club. Connell can take heart from Youssouf Mulumbu’s departure while he should be better set to play than Eboue Kouassi too.
Whatever happens with Connell, you don’t get the impression he’s here to bulk up Celtic’s development side. The teenager will be seen as a first-team player and treated accordingly. It would be nice to see him given an opportunity to shine in pre-season but the harsh reality is that Celtic only have two more friendless to come.
That means that he may have to make his first impression when the pressure is on – in a Champions League or Premiership match. One thing’s for sure, the kid doesn’t lack confidence.