Vakoun Bayo needs January loan move from Celtic

By David Walton

December 23, 2019

When it comes to Vakoun Bayo’s future, the signs have been pointing to less and less game-time.

The big Ivorian, signed back in January 2019 for a reported £2million (The Herald). Almost a year has passed since his arrival, and unfortunately injury has held him back ever since.

Just several months after arriving, the striker was sidelined until the end of the season with a ruptured hamstring (Scottish Sun). He then started pre-season with a goal against Wiener Sport-Club, before again picking up another knock that kept him out of action.

Vakoun Bayo has scored his first goal for Celtic this season (Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

His most recent injury had him out for over a month before he returned to the bench against Hibernian. He’s returned to find a red-hot and undroppable Odsonne Edouard playing ahead of Leigh Griffiths, who is still building up his match sharpness.

He finds himself back in the position of being the third-choice striker at the club. He’s yet to make a substantial appearance since his return from injury, whilst his cameo in Cluj didn’t inspire either as he clearly lacked sharpness himself.

Celtic manager still wants to strengthen strikeforce

Added to that, Neil Lennon has already admitted that he’s looking at “a number” of options up top for a potential January transfer (Daily Record).

Bayo’s most recent injury came at the wrong time (Sebastien Salom-Gomis/AFP/Getty Images)

Any addition could easily see Bayo drop to fourth-choice, and that wouldn’t do him much good at all. If that is the case, it’s vital that Lennon manages to find him a loan move in January to keep his development going.

Lenny has already confirmed that Griffiths will be going nowhere in the mid-season (Daily Record). That leaves only Bayo as a viable candidate to go out and get some minutes.

This season, the 22-year-old has only made 12 appearances with two coming from a starting position (Transfermarkt). His level of game-time only looks like decreasing too, given the fact that there are so many other proven alternatives.

Chances in the Celtic side look non-existent for Bayo (Vagelis Georgariou/Action Plus via Getty Images)

However, that doesn’t mean it’s over for Bayo by any stretch. He adds something else, a physical if raw presence that has plenty of scope for improvement. But that has to start elsewhere so that he can experience more senior football. His impact has been highly-disappointing this year, but it’s still a new environment for him.

A move to a rival Premiership club would be most ideal for him. It would give us a chance to truly see how he settles into the division and what he can bring when he’s on his game. Yet, if that wasn’t possible, then a move to England would still be better than his current situation.

It could be what we need to get the best out of the Ivorian. As we tick towards January, his chances at Parkhead don’t look like getting any better. A loan, however, could sort all of that out.