On his day, Olivier Ntcham is a player with plentiful energy. He is a boundless midfielder capable of bullying opponents and brushing them to one side with enormous power.
Yet, he can also be lackadaisical and careless. There are two sides to every player, but in Ntcham, it’s become a big concern.
The Frenchman has been a valuable asset to Celtic, scoring 24 goals in 147 outings for the Hoops, but this season has been a complete write-off.
That’s not just for Neil Lennon’s team, but for Ntcham himself, someone who has cut an isolated and frustrated figure.
He has started just seven Premiership matches and is being linked with a move away on a regular basis. One suitor is West Brom in England, and if they are indeed interested, Peter Lawwell needs to sanction his sale.
The fact of the matter is that he should have left the Celtic chief fuming. His attitude has been far from desirable this term and for a fee of £4.5m, he is not living up to his billing.
After signing from Manchester City he should have been set for a bright future but that’s dwindling the more he sits on the sidelines.
It’s not often you’d agree with an assessment on talkSPORT, but Alan Brazil hit the nail on the head with the Frenchman last year. “Ntcham, he looks as if he’s tools down and not bothered,” he remarked (via Glasgow Times).
That simply isn’t good enough for a player of his quality and considering his salary of £14k-per-week, moving him on is for the best. He’s now being dropped from the squad completely and against Rangers, he wasn’t even brought off the bench.
It’s got to a point where Ntcham doesn’t look as though he wants to play for the club. Similarly, Lennon doesn’t want to utilise him.
In a Celtic squad that’s 19 points off top spot, that speaks volumes. This is the worst set of players we’ve seen at Parkhead in a decade and the 24-year-old can’t even get himself into the XI.
This will be an unsavoury way to end his stint in Glasgow if he does indeed depart, but he must do so before he upsets the hierarchy even more.