Pat Bonner can't speak highly enough of what Giorgos Giakoumakis is doing for Celtic
BBC pundit Pat Bonner has lauded Celtic striker Giorgos Giakoumakis for the hard work he’s giving the Hoops in 2022.
Giakoumakis has been like a new player since the turn of the year. He already has 8 goals to his name since we returned from the winter break. The latest coming in the form of his Scottish Cup quarter-final brace against Dundee United last night.
In addition to that, the big Greek striker has also shown a real desire to track back and help with the defensive side of the game. Despite being a decent poacher, Giakoumakis is constantly dropping deep and looks to get involved regularly in more defensive areas.
And Bonner believes he’s noticed an improvement in the hard work he’s giving Celtic now as he lauded him for boosting his fitness levels. Speaking on BBC Sportsound last night, Pat said: “He’s a handful. Listen, he’s one of these players that is all arms and legs and strength. That type of stuff. He’s not unlike the old traditional type of centre-forward that we’ve come up against over the years. He’s different than maybe what the modern type of striker is. He’ll get his goals. Whether he’s going to be the one in the team when Kyogo is fit – I doubt it.
“But Celtic have got to carry at least 2 if not 3 strikers. The one thing I would say about Giakoumakis is that he’s working very hard. He’s putting a shift in. When he came at first he almost looked as if he needed to get his fitness levels up. He’s got those up now and he’s working very, very hard for the team.
“He does at times look kind of awkward I would say, but when you’re working very hard in this team then you’ll get chances, and if you can stick them in the back of the net then that’s important.”
Anything less than 100% from Celtic strikers and Ange wouldn’t be giving them minutes
Bonner is spot on. Giakoumakis has been getting himself a lot more involved compared to his rare appearances in the first half of the season. He’s managing to get himself on the ball a lot more, and you can see how eager he is to make an impression.
There’s a reason Ange allowed him to last the 90 minutes yesterday. He can see the hard work Giakoumakis is putting in for the cause. And you can tell that there’s a genuine desire from the player to go above and beyond the normal duties of a striker.
But this isn’t isolated to Giakoumakis. Look at the other players who have made appearances up top for Celtic this season. Daizen Maeda’s hard work is well-known, and the same goes for Kyogo and everything he offered us in the first half of the campaign.
The truth is you just don’t get to be involved in this team if you aren’t all-in. That effort and desire to go and put a shift in is evident all throughout the squad. No wonder too. That’s what it’s going to take if we’re to go and bag ourselves a treble this term.
But there’s no denying the improvement in Giakoumakis as an all-round player between now and last year. There’s a reason he’s a favourite of Ange’s. It’s not because he’s lazy either.
He has a big impact to make between now and the summer. All of a sudden, that £2.5m deal we agreed with VVV-Venlo last year is looking more and more worth it [Sky Sports].