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Chris Sutton credits Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers for proving him wrong over major move

Celtic legend Chris Sutton
-Credit: (Image: SNS Group)


It's fair to say Chris Sutton won't be on Brendan Rodgers' Christmas card list this year.

The Celtic boss was unhappy with Sutton's claim that he was "going through the motions" during the festive period last season. Rodgers had come under fire across as his team endured a wobble in form, throwing Rangers a title lifeline by losing to Kilmarnock and Hearts in December. But the Northern Irishman had the final laugh as the Hoops silenced their critics by storming a Premiership and Scottish Cup glory in the business end of the campaign.

Without naming Sutton, Rodgers took a not-so-subtle dig at his doubters as he celebrated bringing yet more silverware to the east end of Glasgow. But it wasn't the only comment that came back to haunt Sutton. The Parkhead legend expressed concerns over the loan arrival of Adam Idah in January, questioning whether the Irishman would be able to make an impact during the title run-in.

Again, Sutton was made to eat his words as Idah proved the catalyst behind the club's Double success, scoring nine goals - including an iconic Old Firm Scottish Cup winner at Hampden. Now, Sutton has urged the Celtic board to back the manager by pushing the boat out to sign the 23-year-old on a permanent basis. And he applauded both Idah and Rodgers for proving him wrong.

He told the Daily Record: "Adam Idah has already proven his worth to Celtic. That has its own value in terms of Brendan Rodgers and the squad. It's why this deal needs to be sealed. Idah came up trumps for Celtic last season at the time when he was really needed.

"Credit to Rodgers. I wasn't sure the striker would be able to deliver in the manner that he did, but he proved himself adept and the manager was correct. It wasn't just the goals Idah scored, it was the importance of them. Big strikes at key times. The last-minute penalty at Hibs and goal at Motherwell were pivotal in the title race and kept Celtic going forward.

"The opener at Kilmarnock on title-clinching night then top it all off, the winner in the last minute of a Scottish Cup final against Rangers. Now I'm not saying Celtic should just bow to Norwich's every whim here. Negotiations are always delicate and there is give and take in any deal.

"Norwich have to be realistic. Idah had lost his way there. He even said he didn't feel wanted, so who's to say that, despite getting the confidence boost from his efforts in Glasgow, he wouldn't return to being a bitpart player in the Championship.

"Celtic also have to be realistic and know that here is a guy who has proven himself. It's not always easy for players to settle into the club with the demands and expectations. Better players than Idah have gone into that environment and not been able to deliver for whatever reason. The fact Idah has shown he can do it means there was always going to be a couple of quid added to the fee.

"It would be daft of Norwich not to push up their demands because they are aware that Celtic are getting a proven performer into their ranks. So, as with most deals, both parties are going to have to give a little to get it over the line. But the facts are it has to be done. When Rodgers comes out immediately after the Scottish Cup Final and says he wants it done for the next season, the onus is on the board to do it.

"To be honest, with the future of Oh Hyeon-gyu appearing to lie elsewhere given the interest shown in him and his drop down the pecking order when Idah arrived, it's crucial. Celtic may have to shell out a little more than they would like to get it over the line. but Idah is no project now. He has shown he is the real deal and that's why, even if they have to go a little further in the spend, it's a deal that has to be concluded."