Deila’s men relishing Turkish delight after being hampered by Hearts
MIKAEL LUSTIG has appealed to Celtic manager Ronny Deila to sign former England internationalist Carlton Cole following his successful trial, writes Matthew Lindsay.
Cole, who parted company with West Ham at the end of last season, is a free agent and will hold further talks with Deila and Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell this week.
However, the Norwegian coach is keen to add the vastly-experienced 31-year-old, who has returned to London after training at Lennoxtown last week, to his pool of players.
Anthony Stokes has fallen out of favour during the 2015/16 campaign and Deila only has Nadir Ciftci and Leigh Griffiths to choose from up front.
Lustig was impressed with how the ex-Chelsea, Wolves and Aston Villa man performed during his time in Scotland and believes he would improve the Celtic side if he signed a permanent deal.
The Swedish right-back said: “He hasn’t played for a little while, but you can still see he’s a good player. He’s experienced and he looks very good in the box.
“He’s done really well down south and he brings us something that we don’t have right now. He’s different to what we have. He’s a box player and is maybe stronger in the air.
“You always want new players to make the squad better. If we do sign Carlton Cole then it’s not going to make us worse – we will be better.”
Meanwhile, Lustig, who expects to be fit to face Fenerbahce at Parkhead on Thursday night, has dismissed fears playing in Europe will hamper Celtic’s bid to retain the Premiership. He said: “We struggled a bit in the past when we have come back from Champions league to play in the league. But we were down against Aberdeen and then Ajax gave us a boost. We know that we can play good football and take points away from home.
“I think that Europe is important for us. It’s always good to play well when you have a good result in the bag. If we can do well in Europe then we will do better in the domestic league as well. We are still Celtic. We should have a decent enough squad. It’s not just 11 or 14 players who have to do the work every game. The whole squad needs to be ready.”