The late, great David Potter started a feature of writing about a Player of the Day from Celtic’s illustrious history. In order to do continue that legacy and pay a small tribute to David, we will continue profiling a Celtic Player of the Day…
With a distinctive haircut and ferocious left foot, Leigh Griffiths burst onto the Scottish football scene with Livingston aged 16 in late 2006. Thereafter, his performances earned interest from Italy and England before a move to Dens Park for £125k.
Dundee offered Griffiths the chance to push on and after 34 goals in 62 appearances, the young attacker was attracting significant interest. Dundee’s financial issues opened up the chance for Griff to train with Wolverhampton Wanderers. The trial was a success and they paid roughly £150k for his services.
Loans to Hibs followed, who Griffiths supported as a boy, where he netted 39 goals in 78 appearances in two seasons where the Easter Road side enjoyed typically mixed fortunes. Having signed for Wolves when they were in the Premier League, he returned to find them in League One after sliding to England’s third tier.
After making his mark in League One with 13 goals in 30 appearances, Griffiths attracted the interest of Neil Lennon’s Celtic, who were looking to replace the goals lost from Gary Hooper’s move in the previous summer to Norwich City.
The Edinburgh-born striker has always been one that split opinions amongst the support due to off-field incidents; however, there is no doubting his abilities on the pitch. In his time with Celtic, Griffiths scored 123 goals for Celtic in 261 appearances. There were some great moments in a Celtic shirt, strikes at Ibrox against Rangers but a stunning 2015/16 campaign where he netted 40 goals himself.
Although, he did depart under a bit of a cloud, he did so with a place in Celtic’s all-time scoring charts as well as an excellent haul of winners and medals. Ange Postecoglou rewarded him with a one-year deal as he arrived at Celtic, stating each player would have the chance to earn their place. Off-field antics shunted Griffiths’ future back into focus and a loan to Dundee was agreed. Midway through the season, the club decided to exercise an option to end his contract prematurely before Dundee also rejected the chance to sign him permanently.
Since then, Griffiths has struggled to establish himself at a new club but it appears that a permanent move to Australia is close.