"Time will tell"; Celtic-linked Ola Solbakken addresses transfer speculation

By David Walton

May 8, 2022

Bodo/Glimt winger Ola Solbakken has stated that “time will tell” over his long-term future after being linked with Celtic and Roma in recent months.

The Norwegian international is said to be on the Hoops’ radar as a backup plan to Jota. The Scottish Daily Mail reported just under a fortnight ago that Solbakken was an active option [print edition, 27/04, back page].

At the same time, reports in Norway have stated that Roma have been taking a strong look at Solbakken and are considering a summer bid themselves [Dagbladet]. With the player’s contract due to expire in December, it’s been stated that Solbakken would only cost around £1.6m [Gazzetta dello Sport].

Photo by Massimo Insabato/Archivio Massimo Insabato/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images

And now the player has come out and addressed the rumours as well as providing a promising update on his ankle surgery that cast a cloud over his potential future.

As quoted by Eurosport, Solbakken said: “I have not talked at all with Glimt about the contract or transfer. What has taken a lot of my focus is actually that operation here. I’ve felt a lot that it was time to do it now, so we have not talked about it [a move]. When it will be, time will tell. There is nothing more I know or can say about it at the moment.

“If the transfer window had been open, it would not have changed anything. It had to be fixed now, but there is nothing to hide that I want to do the best I can in Glimt with going abroad as a reward for it. It would have been boring to go abroad and start with an injury, but the small operation had to be done anyway.

“I think it is very individual how this goes, so we can really only take it take day by day. There is a national team break that comes in June where we get some vacation, so I hope to be back for the match against Kristiansund [June 18th]. It may be earlier, but we do not know.”

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Ola Solbakken not looking to commit to Bodo/Glimt as Celtic rumour swirls

The only question Solbakken will be asking himself at the moment is whether to stay with Bodo/Glimt until his contract runs out or leave early in the summer.

It’s not a decision that can be made for him, but the truth is there should only be one answer here. If Solbakken doesn’t decide to leave Bodo in the next few months, it’ll make his integration period harder wherever he ends up.

The last thing he should be targeting is joining a club halfway through a season. All it takes is for a bad start and all of a sudden you’ve potentially lost a full campaign in which you could’ve been making an impact with your new team.

Photo by Stanislav Vedmid/DeFodi Images via Getty Images

With regards to who that new club will be, time really will tell. Roma winning a European trophy will likely add to their attraction. However, at the same time, we also have the fact that Celtic are set to enter the Champions League straight away next season.

Solbakken still hasn’t seemed to give much of a preference when it comes to where his next move will take him. But it’s clear he isn’t going to be committing to Bodo/Glimt in the long-term. If he did decide to stay there for the rest of his contract, meanwhile, that would leave him available for free come the new year.

Of course, Celtic have still to submit a formal offer to take the Norwegian to Parkhead next season. It’ll be interesting to see whether this is one we move for in the coming weeks.

In other news, Robbie Neilson admits Celtic boss ended Hearts’ chances with second-half decisions