In an interview to Football Insider, former Leeds United striker Noel Whelan has tipped out-of-contract Bournemouth speedster Jordan Ibe to potentially reignite his career at Parkhead next season, under the able guidance of manager Neil Lennon. Whelan further suggests that the Englishman could turn out to be the next Scott Sinclair at Celtic Park and that the Celts should look to complete a deal for him in the summer. Although the forward’s contract with the Cherries is set to expire at the end of June, Eddie Howe has reportedly made it clear that his deal will not be getting extended.
This means that the forward will be forced out this summer, but with Celtic interested in Jordan Ibe, everything could fall into place perfectly. Whelan said, “I am pretty sure he is a player that Neil Lennon can get the best out of. They did it with Scott Sinclair. He had a fantastic period there. They probably see him as a similar player but he needs to meet the expectations people had of him when he left Liverpool. He was a fantastic player but has never hit the heights that were expected from people. Celtic have managed to create a great environment to be around, a winning environment.”
Why Are Celtic Looking To Sign More Wingers?
While the Celts faithful will argue that Lennon already has a wide plethora of attacking talent at his disposal, it must be conceded that the number of dependable natural wingers in the Celtic squad is quite limited. While names like Ryan Christie and James Forrest have undoubtedly had key parts to play this season, the fact remains that wide players like Maryan Shved and Daniel Arzani have to produce more in the final third of the pitch. Bringing in a young natural wide-man, who’s isn’t afraid to take on his defender, could end up being a good move for Celtic.
What Would Jordan Ibe Add To This Celtic Side?
The Bournemouth man made the switch to the Vitality Stadium back in the summer of 2016, after failing to properly make a place for himself in the side during his former days at Liverpool. Despite coming through the ranks at Anfield and making a decent enough impression, Jurgen Klopp was never satisfied with his performance levels and hence moved him on a few years ago. Since the move as well, the speedster has struggled to maintain an extended run of form and continues to linger in the periphery of the Bournemouth squad.
Formerly of Wycombe Wanderers, the 24-year-old has over a 100 Premier League appearances under his belt, but only managed to feature twice in the entirety of the league this time around.
More worryingly, the forward’s 92 appearances for the Cherries have yielded just five goals and nine assists – an extremely underwhelming return for such a highly-rated player. With that said though, it must be conceded that Neil Lennon could well pull off another ‘Scott Sinclair’ transfer by bringing in Jordan Ibe.
Celtic Interested In Jordan Ibe: Should Neil Lennon Make This Deal Happen?
One thing that can be said with confidence about the former Liverpool speedster is that he’s got all the attributes it takes for a player to singlehandedly change the course of a match. His sheer pace and dribbling abilities would be unmatched at Parkhead, and the addition of a confident forward like Ibe could be a game-changer for Lennon’s side. Whether or not Lennon is able to get the best out of the Englishman could define his career at Celtic Park, but the fact remains that the former Liverpool man has been far from his best over the last couple of seasons.