Son of former Celtic hero gives insight on Jordan Larsson pressure

By Dave Flanigan

July 24, 2022

The son of former Celtic hero Johan Mjallby has spoken of the pressure that Jordan Larsson would have felt if he had signed for Celtic.

Timothy Mjallby was a youth player at the club whilst his father was assistant manager to the first team, and grew up alongside Jordan.

Speaking to The Celtic Way, Mjallby said: “We were best friends growing up and we used to hang around a lot when we were kids as my dad and his dad were good mates due to the Swedish and Celtic connection.

Photo by NATALIA KOLESNIKOVA/AFP via Getty Images

“I still follow him (Jordan) on Instagram and he follows me and we talk sometimes but it is not like we meet up on a regular basis or anything. I saw he was linked with a move to Celtic in the summer and that would have been something else.

“I think it would have been big pressure for Jordan – perhaps the biggest pressure ever – if he signed for Celtic.

“Being the son of a famous footballer is a weird experience, to be honest. It probably used to get to me when I was a lot younger. I’ve just turned 27 and now I don’t really care. When I was younger and at Celtic, it probably affected me quite a lot. It was never a hindrance but there were always comparisons to him (Johan). It has its pros and cons.”

The hardest act to follow

Few names are as synonymous with Celtic in the modern era as Henrik Larsson.

Undoubtedly, the name carries an incredible weight, and the pressure on Jordan to replicate anything like the success his father enjoyed at the club would have been huge.

However, Larsson Jnr clearly has pedigree at a high level, and has the skillset to play in this Celtic team, as a dynamic, pressing utility forward, and the squad probably short a forward with Albian Ajeti likely to depart before the end of the transfer window.

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It would have been a massive statement of intent and inarguably a coup to secure a player of his quality on a free transfer after his release from Spartak Moscow.

Whilst stepping out of his father’s sizeable shadow would have been a challenge, it’s one that a player of his calibre should relish, so it’s still a little disappointing that we’re now unlikely to see Jordan follow in Henrik’s footsteps.

At the same time, it’s difficult to not want to see a player with such an inextricable connection to the club succeed, even if it’s not at Celtic.

In other news: Ange Postecoglou’s 60-game Celtic plan