Back in the summer of 2020, Celtic were reported to be keeping a very close eye on a young Liverpool centre-forward who went by the name of Taiwo Awoniyi.
It was claimed that the Hoops were considering a move for the 24-year-old as a potential replacement for Odsonne Edouard – who was attracting interest of his own from several Premier League sides after firing the Bhoys to the Premiership title the season prior.
Although, when the Frenchman remained at Parkhead, Celtic eventually decided against a move for Awoniyi, with the youngster going on to join Union Berlin on a season-long loan deal.
Celtic were linked with the Nigeria U23 international again the following January, with 90min reporting that the Hoops were contemplating a move for the striker upon the completion of his loan spell with the German side – for whom he scored five goals and registered three assists over 21 Bundesliga appearances in 2020/21.
However, despite it being reported that Liverpool were demanding as little as £5m in order to part with the attacker, Celtic once again missed out on a deal for Awoniyi, with Union going on to seal the centre-forward’s permanent signing for a figure in the region of £6m.
This has quickly proven to be something of a steal, as, over Awoniyi’s 26 Bundesliga appearances this season, the £13.5m-rated forward has exploded, scoring 12 goals and creating three big chances for his teammates, as well as taking an average of 2.1 shots and making 0.8 key passes per game.
These returns have seen the £35k-per-week player who journalist Lolade Adewuyi dubbed both a “unicorn” and his club’s “leading man” average a SofaScore match rating of 6.83, ranking him as Urs Fischer’s ninth-best performer in the German top flight.
And, not only has Awoniyi’s impressive goalscoring form been a crucial factor in Union’s push to secure European football this season, but it has also caught the eye of a number of Premier League sides, with both West Ham United and Newcastle United reported to be keen on a £25m move for the striker this summer.
As such, considering the fact that Celtic spent £5m on the signing of Albian Ajeti at the time of their initial links with the Nigerian hotshot back in 2020, it is clear to see the Bhoys had something of a nightmare when missing out on the 24-year-old.