Loan moves beneficial for Tilio and other Celtic fringe players

A loan spell away from Lennoxtown could be beneficial to Marco Tilio and indeed numerous others who have found their access to the Celtic first team blocked for one reason or another.

Reliable journalist Scott Burns reported earlier today that Celtic summer signing Marco Tilio was targeting a loan spell in January if he can’t break into Brendan’s first team plans ahead of the transfer window opening. Tilio made his return for the Socceroos U23s over the weekend and afterwards spoke about looking for a loan move if he can’t break into the side before the end of the year.

That would be a wise move for the Socceroos winger to get some game time under his belt and get used to the physicality of the Scottish game. Not only Marco, but others such as Kwon, who had such a high opinion of himself when he signed, look well out of the picture regarding Brendan’s first team plans at this moment.

Brendan Rodgers and assistant John Kennedy attend a team training session at the Celtic Training Centre in Lennoxtown.  (Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images)

We have a big squad – it’s far too big – and certain players will find it hard to even make the bench once we have a fully fit squad. Indeed some have already found that to be the case when Celtic’s injury list was significant.

It also asks question regarding the much vilified B side who of course take part in the Lowland League, an idea that hadn’t worked and an alternative solution needs to be found. Perhaps the highest profile player in the Celtic B team is young Rocco Vata who as we have talked about over the past few weeks, was training with the first team but has been pushed back down to the B Team this season, presumably because there was no room at the Lennoxtown Inn given the size of the first team squad.

Celtic v Motherwell – cinch Premiership – Celtic Park Celtics Rocco Vata during the cinch Premiership match at Celtic Park, Glasgow. Picture date: Saturday April 22, 2023. Photo Steve Welsh

That’s a backward step for Celtic and it’s no surprise that we are losing our best Academy players rather than develop them for the first team which surely is the point? Yet Celtic must look at it and say ‘can we find a place for the Academy player in the first team squad?’ and the answer is often no. Is the player good enough, sometimes you have got to give them the stage to see what they can do.

In previous eras Celtic would bring on youngsters from the reserves when the team was winning comfortably, so the risk was low. Now players like Vata can’t even get to train with the first team never mind get a place on the bench with the hope of some minutes to show what they can do.

The Lowland League – which Celtic pay to play in – is maybe beneficial to youngsters learning their trade, but does nothing for players who are at the next stage and looking for their break in the first team or a move away to play somewhere else, as in the case of Ben Doak and quite a few others.

Maybe a time to think again about taking part in the lower leagues or starting more tie ups like the one we have with Austrian side Admira Wacker? Those options would be more beneficial to the players and the club. Getting first team experience in a decent level is one that is worth exploring.

(Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP via Getty Images)

Brendan Rodgers has stated that he wants quality rather than quantity going forward in the transfer windows, so we can expect to see more players leaving that come in. That’s going to be a positive step forward for the club but the Celtic Academy players should always have a foot in the door with the players knowing that if they work hard enough and show enough potential then there is a viable opportunity to play for Celtic.

Otherwise what is the point?

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About Author

An ordinary everyday Celtic supporters hailing and still residing in Govan in the shadows of the enemy. I’m a season ticket holder. I Witnessed my first Celtic game in 1988 and have attended when I can ever since. Growing up in the 90s I witnessed Celtic at their lowest, and now appreciate the historic success we enjoy today. I enjoy writing about this wonderful football club and hopefully will continue to do so. I’ve always been a keen writer and initially started this a hobby. My ambition is to one day become as good an author as my fellow Celtic Star colleagues.

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