Opinion: Celtic are correct not to sell 21-year-old talent
Whilst there has understandably been a lot of talk about players that Celtic are signing in the January transfer window, it has been a bit quieter about the players that could be leaving the club this month.
However, it has emerged that there is one player that Celtic will not sell this month, despite their being interest in the player.
The Daily Record have reported that centre-back Stephen Welsh will not be sold this month, even though Serie A side Udinese are interested in the 21-year-old.
The report goes on to say that Celtic want the player to battle it out for a first-team spot rather than let him go.
That seems to be a sensible view by those at Celtic, as it would not make sense to sell Welsh at this particular moment in time.
If the player was at the top of his game or his contract was on the verge of running out, then it would make sense to sell.
But Welsh is under contract at Celtic until 2025, so there is no need for the Hoops to move the player on, like the club did with the likes of Ryan Christie, Kris Ajer and Odsonne Edouard earlier this season.
Welsh can also improve his game at Celtic. The player is not yet a first-choice pick in the Hoops side, for the most part Carl Starfelt and Cameron Carter-Vickers have been the first-choice centre-backs for the club this season.
If Welsh can up his game in the second-half of the season, and hold down a place in the side, then Celtic’s decision will have been vindicated.
Overall, the Hoops should be applauded for the decision not to sell the player. It is a vote of confidence in Welsh’s ability as a player that Ange Postecoglou seems to be so keen to keep him at the club.
The player should take confidence from the fact that Celtic want to keep him, and that could possibly lead to an improvement in Welsh’s performances when he is selected for the side in the second-half of the season.
Overall though, it can only be a good thing that Celtic are so eager to keep hold of one of the club’s most promising youngsters. There is no issue with selling the player for millions in the future, indeed, that is what Celtic should be doing with all the players that come through the youth academy.
But for now, Welsh should be given the chance to battle for a first-team spot, and Celtic are correct to keep the player.