This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…
Tottenham Hotspur youngster Tobi Oluwayemi signed for Celtic after being “blown away” by the Scottish club’s plans for him, according to Football Insider.
The 16-year-old will join Celtic’s Development Squad having signed a three-year deal at Parkhead. The goalkeeper arrives from Premier League side Spurs and has featured for various England youth squads so far in his career.
At only 16 he’s some way from becoming a first-team regular but the keeper was impressed by the club’s pitch to him. Per Football Insider, the sales pitch was led by both academy and recruitment staff and it worked a treat as the exciting prospect signed on the dotted line.
The Celts’ staff made it clear that they see Oluwayemi as a future first-team keeper at the club, something that obviously went down well with the youngster.
The former Spurs goalie can’t see a clear route to the first-team just yet – Scott Bain is currently number one ahead of Craig Gordon, who is in the last year of his deal, while young Conor Hazard looks like becoming Neil Lennon’s third-choice stopper this season.
However, there’s hope that Oluwayemi can break into the first-team during his initial three-year contract, says Football Insider’s report, with Lennon perhaps hoping for a long-term battle between the new arrival and Hazard.
More importantly though, the deal shows Celtic can still compete with the biggest clubs in the market. Spurs have become one of the biggest sides in the world since Mauricio Pochettino arrived, falling at the last hurdle in the Champions League last term before splashing out a club-record £53.8m sum on highly-rated Tanguy Ndombele.
Looking past their status as a new super-club, Pochettino has been a champion of youth since arriving in England and hasn’t been scared to give youngsters their chance. This makes the signing of Oluwayemi even more impressive for the Bhoys – he has chosen to leave a manager who is notorious for nurturing young talent.
At Spurs, there’s a clear progression plan with academy products afforded chances at the highest level. Harry Kane was one of their own, in case you’d forgotten.
Yet, Celtic proved a more enticing prospect for the youngster in what could be a much more important deal than it appears on first glance, as it shows once again that the Hoops have massive pulling power and will continue to be able to lure top talent north of the border.