Celtic presenter Paul John Dykes has claimed that the lack of energy in the current squad is a key ‘concern’ for the team.
When speaking on the A Celtic State of Mind podcast, he claimed that without injured Callum McGregor – or the sold Ryan Christie – the likes of David Turnbull and Tom Rogic can’t bring the ‘same level of energy’ to the side.
McGregor suffered a hamstring injury earlier this season, which has caused him to miss a number of the club’s games recently. Meanwhile, Christie joined English outfit Bournemouth in the summer for a reported fee of around £2.5m.
Having expressed his concerns over the defensive qualities of the likes of Jota, Liel Abada and James McCarthy, speaking prior to the Hoops’ 4-0 defeat to Bayer Leverkusen in the Europa League, Dykes confronted the issue in some detail, saying: “In order to keep that standard up, you need to have a huge amount of energy in the centre of the park.
“Now, when you’ve got Callum McGregor in there, now there’s a guy that probably done the running of two players last season, but he’s got the energy.
“And to use another of the examples, Ryan Christie had that energy when he was playing maybe the number 10.
“But we’ve got David Turnbull and Tom Rogic playing in the same side, who don’t have that same level of energy. And you’ve got two wingers who don’t have the same defensive attributes.
“And I think that’s a massive part of, when it’s going well and you’re attacking and that’s fantastic, it’s great, because these guys are offensive players, but when the opposition presses us and [we] transition back to us defending, I think that’s where we’re getting it wrong.
“And it could well be that we just don’t have the personnel that Ange [Postecoglou] wants in these positions, which is a concern when you consider that three of the guys who I have mentioned have been brought in.”
TIF Thoughts on David Turnbull, Tom Rogic and Celtic…
Turnbull played the full 90 minutes in the matches against Livingston and Dundee United. Rogic also started in both those games and was also unable to help his side claim all three points on either occasion.
Will Celtic make it out of their Europa League group?
With the results not going Celtic’s way often enough of late, there does seem to be an issue with the club at the moment. Perhaps Dykes theory is right – though it may not see a resolution until McGregor returns.