It is being reported that a Celtic wonderkid is on the radar of English Premier League side Chelsea. Karamoko Dembele has long been touted as a future star at Celtic and made his debut for the club last season under Neil Lennon.
Now, according to 90min, Chelsea are hoping to make a move for the 16-year-old once their current transfer ban has been lifted.
Celtic will no doubt be hoping that Dembele sticks around and will likely want to extend his current contract, which expires in 2021, in light of these rumours.
One way they might be able to convince him that staying at Celtic is the best option would be to remind him of another one-time wonderkid who once dumped playing for Celtic for a Chelsea swoop. The player in question is Islam Feruz.
As reported by the IB Times, Chelsea signed the talented Scottish youth international for a compensation fee of £300,000 in 2011. It was an exit that left Celtic bitterly disappointed as they felt Feruz was a future star.
It was also a move that did not work out. Feruz never played a game for the club and struggled to stand out in Chelsea’s bloated youth system. Poor loan spells at OFI Crete, Blackpool, Hibernian, Excelsior Mouscron and Swindon Town followed. He also spent a weekend at Krylia Sovetov in Russia and had an unsuccessful trial at Kazakh outfit FC Aktobe.
Feruz, now 24, was released by Chelsea in January this year and, as reported by The Scotsman, was recently playing park football whilst Scotland were gearing up to play San Marino.
Now a lot of that has to do with the individual player but there is no doubt the move to Chelsea so young was not the best career choice for Feruz. Just look at Billy Gilmour. His move from Old Firm rivals Rangers to Chelsea has been a success and he is now a part of Frank Lampard’s first-team plans.
Celtic, however, will want to use the cautionary tale of Feruz to convince Dembele that the best place to develop his football is in Glasgow.