Celtic January signing Patryk Klimala has opened up on the circumstances surrounding his initial few months at the club, speaking to the official club website today.
The Polish striker has so far failed to make an impact in Neil Lennon’s first-team but has pledged he is fitter than ever and ready to ignite his Hoops career.
Odsonne Edouard and Leigh Griffiths struck up a fruitful partnership following the 2020 winter break, limiting Klimala’s opportunities to a handful of appearances and only one start.
However, the 21-year-old was still adjusting to moving countries and getting up to the standard required in training.
That’s perfectly understandable given his age.
As quoted by CelticFC.net, he said: “At the beginning when I signed, I was tired because I didn’t have a pre-season. I had only two training sessions before joining Celtic so it was hard, but I made up for it over the lockdown and now I’m ready.
“I didn’t get to properly know everyone when I first signed, because I only had a month or so with the team before lockdown. I’m starting to get to know the team better now and I feel really happy and more settled.
“My fiancée and I really like Glasgow and now hopefully I can start playing regularly for the team.”
Later, in a club Q+A session, the forward followed up on Callum McGregor’s recent kind comments about the shape he is in, revealing he has packed on more than 3kg of muscle in the offseason.
💬 @KlimalaPatryk: Thank you! ☺️
When I signed, I didn’t have a pre-season so it was hard but I made up for it over the lockdown. I’ve been working hard and have added 3.5kg of muscle.
— Celtic Football Club (from 🏡) (@CelticFC) July 3, 2020
That added mass should help him get to grips with the physicality of Scottish football.
Hopefully though it hasn’t detracted from his pace, which looked to be one of his strengths when he did get minutes last season.
This pre-season period is definitely an important one for the player but given he has worked so hard, Neil Lennon will likely reward him with minutes in any upcoming friendly matches.
Although Edouard is ever-reliable and Griffiths has looked hungrier than ever, Klimala gaining confidence and fitness is a fantastic development.
It could result in real competition in the attacking areas next term.