Celtic contingent continue to shine for Ireland u21s

Celtic’s Irish contingent continue to shine on the international stage for Ireland’s u21s side as both Bosun Lawal and Rocco Vata helped their side secure a 7-0 win over San Marino last Friday.

Vata netted a second half hat-trick in the victory, in what was an extremely impressive performance from the 18-year-old. The Irishman now has five goals in this qualifying campaign, albeit all coming against San Marino. Vata’s first of the day was a good finish but fortunate to say the least, after a ball played over the top to Tony Springett fell to him in the box.

His second really showcased the talent the Celtic academy graduate possesses, picking up the ball just inside San Marino’s half of the pitch, he expertly dummied a San Marino player before firing an excellent out the box finish into the bottom left corner of the goal.

Bosun Lawal will not thank Vata for his intervention on the final goal of the night, as he deflected in Lawal’s shot from a corner into the net, preventing the Dubliner from getting on the scoresheet. Both Lawal and Vata have been impressive for Ireland in their campaign to date, as they sit second in their group, one point beyond Italy and four ahead of Norway who have a game in hand.

. Bosun Lawal of Fleetwood Town at the Pride Park, Derby, on 19 August 2023. Photo PSI

The pair have endured contrasting club seasons, with Lawal enjoying a breakout year at Fleetwood in League One, standing out as one of the most impressive midfielders in the division.

Vata has been extremely prolific for Celtic’s B team this season, scoring 12 times in 15 Lowland League games, but he has struggled for any first team opportunities under Brendan Rodgers this season. A contract is reportedly on the table for Rocco, son of Rudi, with many clubs across Europe interested in the teenager.

Lawal has spoken about his desire to return to Celtic and break into the team next season, which is promising to say the least. Both players have huge futures in the game and are talented enough to contribute now, tying down the Irish pair must be a priority for the club.

James French

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