Noel Whelan, an ex-Premier League and Aberdeen striker, believes Albian Ajeti will bounce back from his first-season troubles next season at Celtic Park.
Whelan, 46, believes that if Neil Lennon had stayed, Ajeti would not have had a chance to reconcile with the Celtic side due to his poor form last season; however, with the Northern Irishman’s dismissal and the subsequent appointment of Ange Postecoglou, the Swiss international now has a chance to rekindle the fire that he displayed at FC Basel, and become a key player in Celtic’s bid to reclaim the title that has been lost.
“There’s a new manager, a new start. There’s a fresh slate for some players who haven’t been given opportunities.
“It wasn’t a great season for Ajeti or anyone at Celtic. Look at the points difference between first and second. Now they have a point to prove, prove you’re not that bad. Prove it won’t be another bad season.”
Following the reported links Odsonne Edouard has had away from the club and Leigh Griffiths’ current suspension from the club, Ajeti has shown promise in the first two games of Postecoglou’s tenure; having played Sheffield Wednesday and Charlton Athletic in the pre-season camp in Newport, the man signed from West Ham has scored in both. With supporters back in the stands, Ajeti has a chance to leave his imprint on Scottish football this season if he can fire under Ange Postecoglou’s more offensive approach.
“Ajeti didn’t hit the ground running after a big-money move, he had expectations on his shoulders. It’s the perfect start for him. He’s had that season now, his second season is the season where he should shine”, said Whelan.
“Then we see why Celtic paid the money.”