Celtic’s Giorgos Giakoumakis has persistently struggled for fitness during his career, The Athletic‘s Kieran Devlin has revealed.
He was brought in as a replacement for Odsonne Edouard, who left to join Crystal Palace, but as we pass mid-October, the Greece international has only played 33 minutes of football for the Hoops.
Giakoumakis has apparently looked ‘rusty to put it mildly’ in Ange Postecoglou’s training sessions and suffered a calf injury in the warm-up for the Premier Sports Cup tie against Raith Rovers last month.
In a Q&A for The Athletic following the weekend win over Motherwell, Devlin was asked by a Celtic supporter to shed some light on ‘why it has taken so long for [Giakoumakis] to be fit’.
In reply, he said ‘that fitness issue is an ongoing thing’ for the 26-year-old.
‘Speaking to people who have known him before’, Devlin was left with the impression that Giakoumakis’ largely healthy 2020/21 season – he started 30 of VVV Venlo’s 34 Eredivisie games – was ‘an anomaly with his form and fitness’.
This is very worrying to hear for Celtic fans. It suggests that the club may struggle to get their replacement for Edouard, who scored 86 goals in 179 appearances at Parkhead, fit and firing.
It wouldn’t be a surprise if Giakoumakis’ prolific 2020/21 season did prove to be an ‘anomaly’ in terms of his form, either, as he only netted three goals in 48 outings for his previous club AEK Athens.
Could this prove to be a costly recruitment mistake from Celtic? Let’s hope the Greek striker doesn’t end up being too injury-prone to get a proper chance to prove himself in Glasgow.
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