Celtic have birthed some of the world’s best talents, with Virgil van Dijk arguably one of the leading examples at the moment. Moussa Dembele is another who was built into a high-flying maestro and went on in search of pastures new.
But with Neil Lennon’s current worries, a player like the Frenchman would be a huge boost to the Celtic frontline. Odsonne Edouard has been disappointing since he returned from his self-isolation spell and it seems the manager doesn’t trust Leigh Griffiths enough to put him in the starting lineup.
Dembele left the Premiership outfit in 2018 after Lyon came knocking with a £19.7million offer. In terms of business, the Hoops will have been rubbing their hands together over banking 100% profit on the sale. The striker joined Celtic on a free transfer from Fulham and spent less than two years in Scotland before moving back to his native country.
However, his impressive tally of 51 goals and 18 assists in 94 appearances will have been a tough thing to lose. Celtic are known for their dominant attacking displays and untouchable perch atop of the league table, but this season things are changing. Rangers currently lead the Premiership after winning 12 of their 14 games played.
Since leaving the Bhoys, Dembele has flourished in Ligue 1. His debut season for Lyon consisted of a 15-goal return in the league and a further eight goals notched up in other competitions. He topped this record the following season with 16 goals in the league and 24 overall (via Transfermarkt).
The 24-year-old’s efforts now mean he is valued at £36million, an impressive £33.3million more than what he was worth in his final season for Fulham.
If Celtic fall to the sword of Rangers this season, they will be looking back at sales like this and cursing themselves for opting to secure a fast profit over keeping hold of a real gem.