Riga manager Mihails Koņevs has disclosed that he feared facing Celtic right-back Jeremie Frimpong more than any other Hoops player, the Daily Record reports.
Fimpong didn’t start the game against the Latvian side. However, he came on in place of the injured James Forrest and was probably Celtic’s best player.
His cross set up Mohamed Elyounoussi’s goal for Celtic’s later winner in the 1-0 victory.
Konevs thought that Frimpong would start the game, and he wasn’t surprised that the Hoops player had such a huge impact on the game.
“Thought he would play from the start”
“Celtic didn’t have a clear chance to score, but with the release of No. 30 (Jeremie Frimpong) which I was most afraid of and thought he would play from the start, dangerous episodes and a goal from the right flank also arose” he said, as quoted by the Daily Record.
It has to be said, Konevs has called the game correctly. Celtic found it difficult to create chances until Frimpong came on.
As soon as Frimpong got the ball he was causing Riga all kinds of problems. In fact, before Celtic scored, he had almost set up two goals for Albian Ajeti only for the striker to be denied by bad luck.
It is interesting that the Riga coach expected Frimpong to start. That is probably not what most Celtic fans would predict would happen.
Not many Celtic fans would have expected player to start
Most Celtic fans would have predicted Frimpong to be on the bench. Indeed, who knows how much game time he would have got had James Forrest not been injured.
Still, Forrest’s misfortune ended up being both Frimpong and Celtic’s gain. It was a tough game for Celtic. It likely would have been even harder without Frimpong’s performance.
Hopefully Frimpong can make the Celtic right-side his own, whilst Forrest recuperates. Those two could have a battle for the right-wing position this season, and that can only benefit Celtic going forward.
In other news, Ryan Mullen has left Celtic on loan to join Cove Rangers.