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FROZEN-OUT CELT’S FUTURE IN BALANCE

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VAKOUN ISSOUF BAYO’S Celtic future could be settled in the next three hours of football.

The 24-year-old Ivorian striker, who joined the Hoops in a £2million move in January 2019, has failed to score a solitary Premiership goal in nine appearances for the club.

He was shipped out on loan to French second tier outfit Toulouse in the summer – and the club are now just two games away from promotion to Ligue 1. They take on Nantes at home in the first leg play-off tonight and face the return on Sunday at 5pm.

A step up in divisions could see the club’s hierarchy activate the option to buy for the frontman who has claimed 12 goals in his 34 outings, many of them from the bench, according to the Daily Record.

Astonishingly, Bayo, who was recommended to the Parkhead club by his fellow-countryman Kolo Toure who is now an assistant to Brendan Rodgers at Leicester City, has claimed just one strike fewer than the Celtic double-act of Leigh Griffiths, with seven, and £5million Albian Ajeti, who has collected a mere six since his summer arrival from West Ham.

The powerhouse forward has netted two goals for the Glasgow team in knock-out competitions against Clyde, 3-0 in the Scottish Cup, and 5-0 against Partick Thistle in the Betfred League Cup.

Griffiths is sweating on his Hoops future with his contract due to expire on Tuesday while Odsonne Edouard will leave the club in the summer revamp.

Eddie Howe will be looking at the strengthening his striking department, but it is unlikely there will be a way back for Bayo, who has 12 months to run on his terms.

The next two matches will go a long way to settling the player’s future.

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