Karamoko Dembele has long been the darling of the Celtic academy.
Blessed with pace, agility, trickery and an eye for goal, it’s obvious to see why the Hoops have been so excited about his talent for years now.
Dembele was playing for Celtic’s U20 side at the age of just 13 and then broke into the senior team as a 16-year-old back in 2019. He came off the bench against Hearts and immediately caught the eye with his close touch control.
Months later he was being named alongside Barcelona superstar Ansu Fati in L’Equipe’s crop of European football’s finest wonders. They put together six of the best young players revolutionising the game at the time.
Dembele is still only 18 years of age but two years down the line from his debut and he’s still not started a match for Celtic.
Injury issues have plagued him and he even refused a loan spell last season. However, with under a year left on his contract at Parkhead, it feels like now or never in terms of a breakthrough.
That being said, they have another fine young winger coming through the ranks that could well usurp Dembele if you believe the hype.
That happens to be Ben Doak who starred for Scotland U17s a few days ago. Just 15, it will be a while before we see him on the senior stage but he is making all the right noises in academy football.
He scored a fine looping header against Wales a few days ago, a goal that came just moments after a jaw-dropping piece of play down the right.
Ben Doak goal for Scotland u17s vs Wales u17s – 02/09/21 ⚽️ pic.twitter.com/KtPmCtb7JC
— Celtic Youth and Loan Highlights (@celtic_ylvids) September 3, 2021
Doak showcased his electrifying pace and dazzling dribbling by taking the Welsh defence to the cleaners before playing in a cross.
With that exciting run, it gave out immediate Dembele vibes.
After the game, the teenager was given considerable praise by those around him. Manager Brian McLaughlin commented: “Ben Doak did well tonight and he’s a great player. He’s a good threat and great character around training as well. His attitude towards training is infectious and there’s no doubt that he loved his debut for the 17s tonight.
“It felt like every time he had the ball he could create us a chance.”
Meanwhile, Bhoys Analtyics added: “Ben Doak is a name Celtic fans should get familiar with. Real chance of producing a generational talent.”
A direct forward player, he has all of the tools to cause danger at senior level too. If he adds a more physical aspect to his game and continues scoring goals, there is every reason to believe that he’ll be on Postecoglou’s radar.
The thought of Doak and Dembele forming part of the first-team set-up in years to come is a mouth-watering one.