Lewis Morgan has had a difficult shift this season. The 23-year-old winger was used sparingly as a squad player before the concurrent absences of Odsonne Edouard, Leigh Griffiths and Bayo saw him drafted into the striker role against Rennes on 28th November.
Lewis scored a good goal that day but he is not a striker. He made another four appearances in that position before Edouard’s return, which brought the experiment to an end. He made 17 appearances in League One for Sunderland during the second half of last season. In the Wembley play-off final, he was brought on as an early substitute, while Aiden McGeady remained on the bench, but his time in the North East was not particularly productive.
Now he is Going to Miami for talks with Inter (not that one), with the MLS side having agreed a fee with Celtic for his permanent transfer.
There are several things about our experience with Lewis Morgan I like. Celtic scouts considered him the top talent in the Championship, a player with the potential to make the step up. It is good that we sign players like this.
He was loaned back to St Mirren, then after six months at Lennoxtown, out to Sunderland. He was given a chance in the qualifiers, then put through the striker turmoil, which gave Neil Lennon a chance to assess the player.
The player has a League Cup winner’s medal and a Wembley experience, things that he will be talking about for the rest of his life, and is likely to sign a contract to keep him in Florida for a few years. He would have hoped to hold down a first team place at Celtic, but on balance, the move from St Mirren has worked out well for him.
We have difficulty keeping players who are outstandingly successful, but they usually leave a for fee that allows us to further strengthen. What happens with players who do not make the grade is also important. Getting them off the wage bill, for a fee and hopefully a profit, stops the budget from being clogged by unproductive costs, a problem we have discussed on these pages since the days of Martin.