MIKEY JOHNSTON’S goal for season 2022/23 is clear cut – the Celtic winger is desperate to score a goal.
The former Scotland Under-21 international last struck for the Hoops over TWO AND A HALF YEARS ago when he netted in the 73rd minute of a 4-1 Premiership win over Ross County in Dingwall.
Neil Lennon sent on the youngster for Tom Rogic in the 72nd minute and Johnston sealed the points on a crisp winter’s afternoon in the Highlands on December 1 2019. After his quickfire counter, the overjoyed forward celebrated with the visiting fans.
Ever since that day, excluding a penalty-kick in the Scottish Cup Final shoot-out success against Hearts in December 2020, the player has been firing blanks. In his Celtic career, he has claimed 11 strikes in total.
HIGHLAND HELLO…Neil Lennon sends on Mikey Johnston for Tom Rogic against Ross County on December 1 2019.
DINGWALL DELIGHT…Mikey Johnston slams in the Hoops’ final goal in the 4-1 win.
HAIL THE HERO…Celtic fans celebrate with Mikey Johnston behind the net after his strike.
THAT’S MY BHOY…Callum McGregor congratulates Mikey Johnston after his well-taken strike.
Amazingly, Johnston has gone two and a half seasons without a goal, but, to be fair to the touchline ace, he has missed huge chunks of the campaigns through injury. Practically, his entire 2020/21 term was obliterated and he made a mere 10 appearances in a wretched term for the Parkhead men.
The 23-year-old Glaswegian turned out 20 times for Ange Postecoglou and played in the 2-1 Premier Sports League Cup Final triumph over Hibs six days before Christmas.
It was Brendan Rodgers who handed Johnston his debut in May 2017 when he played against St Johnstone in a 4-1 victory and the-then Hoops boss said: “Mikey is a very exciting player. He’s fast and he still has a lot of growth left in him – but he’s just turned 18. He’s dynamic and, once he becomes a little bit better on the final pass and can add goals, then he’s going to be a big talent.”
Prophetic words from the Irishman.
SHOUT OF ORDER…Mikey Johnston yells in frustration as an effort misses the target this season.
ROARING SUCCESS…Mikey Johnston, watched by David Turnbull, celebrates the Premier Sports League Cup victory against Hibs on December 19 2021.
Possibly, Johnston has been trying too hard and has been putting his laces through the ball when a little more poise instead of power might pay greater dividends.
The new season will be a critical one in the raider’s career and the goal-shy Hoops forward has just announced a change of agent, switching to Avid Sports and Entertainment Group who also represent team-mate James Forrest, as reported in the Scottish Sun.
Johnston, who was linked with a loan move to Aberdeen in January, is contracted to Celtic until 2025.