With Kyogo going to be ‘out for a number of weeks’ according to manager Ange Postecoglou and Daizen Maeda being called up for Japan, it only leaves Celtic with two obvious striking options.
Giorgos Giakoumakis and Liel Abada.
As far as I’m aware Johnny Kenny arrived injured when he came in from Sligo Rovers recently so I don’t believe he will have a chance to play either. And I cannot see Ange playing any of the B team guys like Dawson or Moffat in such a big game.
I think both Giakoumakis and Abada will get a chance to play up top in the coming fixtures, starting against Alloa in the Scottish Cup tonight.
A lot will depend on how both perform in these games in my opinion, and to be honest, I think both will feature in the game at some stage, but I believe only one of them will start.
Right now I believe Ange would start the game on February 2nd with Abada up top.
Abada has shown he can play that role for us and score goals when starting in that position, not to mention a lot of his goals, if not all of them seem to be typical ‘striker’s goals’ or ‘poacher’s goals’ if you like, he has a great habit of getting into the box at the right time and slotting in from close range, either with his feet or his head. He already has 10 goals for us this season, which is a terrific return, especially as he has mostly played on the right wing.
Playing Abada also means we would be able to play the same way as we are used to playing. Abada has similar attributes to Kyogo and Maeda, he is fast, is good at running in behind the backline and he also presses very well.
Giakoumakis on the other hand is more of a target man, someone who can bully defenders and hold the ball up. As we saw last season he was the Eredivisie top scorer in a relegated team, so he obviously has goals in him, but sadly he has been injured most of the time since arriving at Celtic, so we haven’t really been able to see what he’s all about, but as I mentioned earlier, we should hopefully see more of him in the next few games before the derby.
Based on what we have seen so far, he doesn’t seem the type that will run in behind defenders that our midfield can play through balls to. A couple of his goals came that way for VVV Venlo, but the vast majority were headers or volleys from crosses and he also scored a lot of penalties. In fairness though we do play a lot of crosses into the box in a lot of games, but we don’t get a lot of goals from this, but if we had someone like Giakoumakis getting on the end of these crosses, you can assume we’d scored a lot more from them.
As it stands now, assuming both are fit and we don’t sign another striker, I can see Abada starting for us against Sevco with Giakoumakis coming on around 60-70 mins to help see the game out.
Let me know in the comments below who you think Ange will go with on February 2nd, assuming the game goes ahead of course!