Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers believes that Odion Thiago Holm has the potential to be “a top player”.
The Norwegian Under 21 international was handed his first league start against Aberdeen, playing 55 minutes of the 6-0 win at the weekend and, asked about the midfielder after the match, Rodgers said:
“He’s got all the attributes in terms of being a top player. He needs to get physically stronger in terms of his upper body. But he can travel with the ball, he can see a pass and then he can make the pass.”
“He’s obviously played a lot lower down the pitch in his short career so far. But he has that possibility to play higher up to get in the box and score goals because technically he’s very, very good and he has a nice little edge to him as well where he could put his foot in and make tackles. So I just think it’s just growth for him and development and playing today we, hopefully, can see those qualities.”
Celtic were prepared to take a gamble on Holm
Despite having only played 77 senior games, the Hoops decided to spend a significant sum (€3m) in order to bring him to Parkhead in the summer.
Based on early impressions, it seems the decision will pay off, with Holm having impressed fans during his outings for the first team so far. Rodgers clearly rates the 20-year-old highly too after naming him in the starting lineup on Sunday.
There is competition for places in midfield
Even though Reo Hatate will be out until Christmas with a hamstring injury, Rodgers still has plenty of options in the middle of the park. David Turnbull came on for Holm against the Dons and scored.
The likes of Paulo Bernardo and Tomoki Iwata are also in the squad, so Holm will have to work hard to get more opportunities in the future.