Celtic could save some real money this summer by bringing back USA sensation Andrew Gutman.
The Hoops youngster is on a year-long loan deal at Charlotte Independence. That only kicked in during February, but Celtic have the option to call him back to Parkhead this summer (Celticfc.net)
With Emilio Izaguirre having departed after rejecting a new contract (Scottish Sun), Celtic could be considered short at left-back.
Kieran Tierney has went under the knife after the Scottish Cup final with double-hernia surgery. Meanwhile, Jonny Hayes isn’t a natural left-back, and despite trying his best for the Hoops, is limited when being forced to play so deep.
Gutman, on the other hand, is starting to look the real deal. His performance levels for the Independence both going forward and with his one-vs-one defending has been sky-high. So far, he’s managed two assists and one goal during his 12 appearances in Charlotte. He’s also been working under former Celtic man Jim McGuinness, who’s the head coach of the Independence too.
Gutman’s performances have also been recognised by the US national team. He’s been called up to the provisional squad for the upcoming Gold Cup this summer. Regardless of whether he makes the cut or not, this is a huge confidence booster for him.
Gutman could learn plenty from Tierney
And Celtic can now ask themselves the question of whether Gutman should come back and take the role of Tierney’s deputy on. Celtic certainly need one, and Gutman has the credentials to make a positive impact at Parkhead.
Added to that, he could hopefully learn a lot from Tierney too. Getting those two onto the training field together could work wonders for the USA youngster. But it’s not clear as to whether Celtic are even entertaining bringing him back.
He’s only been at Charlotte for over three months now. Celtic may want him to see out the campaign and return to Glasgow mid-season. But arriving back during such a hectic period of the campaign wouldn’t be ideal. It would be good for Neil Lennon to see him up close and personal during a pre-season training camp.
He’s clearly making waves in the States. So taking up the option of calling him back could prove to be a big upgrade on Izzy as well as save the club some money too.
It would be nice to see what Gutman is truly capable of, and taking him out of his comfort zone would do just that.