Celtic striker Vakoun Bayo may end up at St Mirren before the summer transfer window is over, but a deal could’ve been done for the striker back in January.
Indeed, the Buddies made an approach for Bayo on the final day of the transfer window. With Bayo having struggled for opportunities, it looked like a good chance for him to go out and get some minutes.
However, Neil Lennon quickly shut the door on any prospect of his Ivorian powerhouse leaving at the start of the year. Despite the fact Bayo ended season 2019-20 with 16 appearances (Transfermarkt), his impact was still relatively forgetful.
With St Mirren reportedly back in for the striker according to journalist Raman Bhardwaj, what made the Hoops decide against the big forward leaving temporarily last season? Saints boss Goodwin explained exactly why at the start of February to the BBC. Labelling Bayo a potentially “fantastic” addition, here’s what he had to say when questioned six months ago:
“Bayo would be a fantastic signing for us. But Neil Lennon wants to run with four strikers and Bayo is part of his plans and that’s where that one ends.”
Goodwin’s explanation opens up intriguing questions
So Lennon said no because Bayo was part of his plans and that he wanted to run with four strikers. Well, interestingly, the Celtic boss was open to the prospect of Bayo departing on loan as recently as yesterday (Daily Record).
Yet it’s clear the Hoops manager wants to work with four strikers. If Bayo departs, that leaves us with Odsonne Edouard, Patryk Klimala, and Leigh Griffiths available to play up top.
Therefore, that points to the Celtic boss clearly being in the market for another forward. It also suggests that the only reason Bayo didn’t leave back in January was because the Parkhead side didn’t have enough time to get another body in the door.
Ironically, Bayo only went on to play just under 40 minutes of game-time between Goodwin’s comments and the season shutting up shop in March.
So it will be interesting to see whether Celtic let Bayo go before another striker comes in the door. If he does, it stands to reason that the club will be extremely confident of an extra body arriving There’s no reason for Lennon not wanting four strikers this season, especially with how popular the 3-5-2 was last term.
It would also be the best move for Bayo. He needs minutes, and everyone connected with Celtic wants to see what he can offer, particularly in Scotland.