Dembele couldn’t cope with pressures of Celtic, says Mark Wilson

Karamoko Dembele could not cope with the pressures of coming through at Celtic after being dubbed a wonderkid, according to Mark Wilson. The 19-year-old signed for Stade Brest in France after his deal with The Scottish Champions expired.

The former Celtic full-back told Clyde Superscoreboard last night that the expectation on Dembele was so great that he struggled to really live up to that initial hype that saw him make his U20s debut aged 13 and his first-team debut aged 16.

“He’s got probably something to prove. He will be desperate to show that he is the player everybody thought he could be.

“So it could be but just the whole spotlight on him in this country. I mean, how many kids can we say that about in Scotland? Well, it’s incredibly difficult. I wish we would stop putting so much pressure on our young players who come through because it does hinder them. There’s no doubt about it.

“You know, we should let them go and play, dip in and out the team when it suits. And there were so many questions.

“Why is he not starting in the first team? He obviously wasn’t quite ready and even when he did play, the fans seen him coming on, they would be expecting too much again.

“There’s no doubt he’s got talent. And I wish him all the best. I hope he goes away and I hope he plays for a number of years. I mean, you get in England. Remember Wayne Rooney came through from 16, this kid is a wonderkid and he proved he was. This goes back a long, long way. I mean, this goes back since 2013 this kid has had this pressure. How do you deal with that?

Dembele made his debut in Celtic’s win over Hearts on the final day of the 2018/19 season. However, he appeared to disappear off the radar under Neil Lennon. Dembele is believed to have asked the Irishman for more game time in the 2020/21 season and Lennon was less than impressed. Dembele has always been tipped as a superstar in the future but injuries have stalled his development and he is clearly keen on making the desired progress.

The youngster scored his first goal for the club in a win over St Johnstone towards the end of the 2020/21 season. The promising attacker came on for James Forrest in the second half and made an immediate impact, finding the net with a smart finish.

Hopefully, Celtic will reap the rewards of Dembele’s obvious talents when he returns to the first team. The glimpses of Dembele have been promising and to hear that he has improved in terms of application since Ange Postecoglou has taken over from Lennon. Although, clearly he wanted first team football and as Wilson says, he likely wanted away from the Scottish game to express himself.

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About Author

Born just as Celtic were stopping the Ten, Lubo98 follows Celtic home and away and helps run his local Celtic Supporters Club. He goes to all the games and is a Law Graduate. Has a particular fondness for Tom Rogic among the current Celts and both Lubo and Henrik form his earliest Celtic memories.


  1. sorry cannot stand wilson after what happened, and him and his lying wife went to court and lied for a scumbag, matt mcglone was there, and at court, i concur with him regarding wilson, why celtic fans give him the time of day escapes me, bigger rat than johnston in my opinion.

    • Someone should tell Matt that Dembele has left Celtic and signed fir Brest. He seems to think it’s a loan or something.