Marvin Compper will be a player/coach after leaving Celtic

By David Walton

July 3, 2019

Marvin Compper’s Celtic departure will now lead to him becoming a player/coach with Duisburg.

The Hoops announced yesterday that Compper’s ill-fated 19-month spell in Glasgow had come to an end. And after agreeing to mutually terminate the defender’s contract, he was quickly back home to Germany.

Duisburg are currently in the third-tier of German football. Their Sporting Director Ivo Grlic seemed excited to have him in Germany too. He told the BBC that his “stubbornness had paid off” in trying to lure Compper to the club.

Marvin Compper is off (Lennart Preiss/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Many would’ve raised an eyebrow as to why that was. After all, Compper had only managed to play one 90-minute game over the last 26 months. But opening up on his departure via the Scottish Sun, Neil Lennon explained that he’ll be taking up a coaching role in his homeland.

“He got a player-coaching job at Duisburg but that one was probably best for both parties. He wasn’t going to fit in our plans so it was best he moves on and we can fill a gap now.”

Player/coach role for Compper, but don’t bank on him playing

Despite Duisburg’s excitement at bringing him in, they’ll be lucky to have Compper playing in this new player/coach role. It wasn’t so much that he was so poor for Celtic and didn’t perform on the pitch. The main problem was that we could hardly get him fit enough for a run of games.

Of course, Compper’s stock in Germany is likely a lot higher than it is here. He was still impressive with Leipzig back in 2016/17. For a third-tier outfit in Germany to then lure that kind of experience to their club is a boost for them.

Compper heads back to a more comfortable environment for him (TF-Images/TF-Images via Getty Images)

As for ourselves, it shakes up the state of play defensively a little bit. Christopher Jullien’s arrival coincides with Compper’s departure. From the outside looking in, you have to imagine Lennon’s first-choice pairing is Jullien and Kristoffer Ajer at the back. Should one of them get injured, Jozo Simunovic would be in as cover.

There still remains a demand for one more centre-back, however. Two injuries to the position at the same time would likely see the shaky Jack Hendry back in amongst the first-team once again. Many Celtic fans will have seen enough of the former Dundee star, and avoiding his inclusion in big games should be a necessity.

Neil Lennon still has work to do on his squad (Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Another signing at the back would do the trick, but you could understand why Lennon may not see that as a priority. After all, we don’t even have a right-back outside of Anthony Ralston as it stands.

Work has been done to shift some players off the wage-bill in Compper and Youssouf Mulumbu. How many we see following them between now and August also remains to be seen.