Speaking in his post-match press conference, Neil Lennon has lauded Odsonne Edouard as an “outstanding centre-forward“.
Celtic ran out 2-1 winners over St Mirren on Boxing Day to further strengthen their grip at the top of the Scottish Premiership, with goals from Callum McGregor and James Forrest sealing all three points.
Despite not getting on the score-sheet, and seeing one ruled out for offside, Edouard was singled out for praise by his manager.
He said (as quoted by The Scottish Sun): “Odsonne’s an outstanding centre-forward. I’m pretty much sure he’ll start on Sunday and he makes us better. He’s a threat and I like his physicality. I like his pace – he comes to life in the final third and he’s such a clever player.
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“His all round game is very good and he gives the team a lot of confidence when he plays. I thought at times he was sublime – there was his vision and he’s so deceptive with his feet. He was maybe unfortunate with the one second half as it looked onside so he didn’t get the rub of the green there. But he’s in outstanding form as the majority of them are. They’re playing really well.”
With 15 goals to his name across all competitions this season, Edouard is making a point of ensuring Celtic haven’t missed Moussa Dembele.
The latter left Celtic Park in the summer of 2018 for a fee in the region of £19.7m, and it has been Edouard who has been tasked with taking over the striking duties. And with a goal-scoring ratio of one in two this year, the Frenchman is more than proving his worth. And at just 21-years-old still, he still has plenty of room to grow in his time in Scotland.
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Lennon’s appraisal of the forward also paints a picture of someone whose real strength lies in what he does off-the-ball. Whilst goals are still the measuring stick of a striker’s qualities, having a number nine who can pose a threat in behind, hold up the play too and also dribble with the ball makes him the complete package.