MOUSSA DEMBELE has been urged to stay at Celtic and help guide the club to unprecedented back-to-back treble.
Speculation continues to surround the future of the French striker with Everton the latest Premier League club to be linked with the 21-year-old. No bid has been made yet but Celtic fans are bracing themselves that last seasons’ top goalscorer with 32 strikes may very well depart this window.
But last night Callum McGregor revealed he believes Dembele is committed to staying with the SPFL Premiership champions and that his team-mates are eager for him to hang around to add to their trophy haul.
“Yeah, definitely,” said the Celtic forward. “That’s obviously going to be a big draw for players like him. It’s just about him wanting to be here to kick on, work hard and be part of this group.
“Obviously all the boys love him and want him to stay and to be part of it. I don’t think he’ll be thinking of going anywhere.
“You hear we bits and see things in the paper you come in the next day and maybe make a passing comment or a bit of banter about it.
“In the main, everyone is focused in being here and I don’t think they are thinking about getting away. They just want to keep being successful and staying part of this group.
“You think back to the Aberdeen game up there where he was unplayable. He looked like a real top player. If we can get him playing like that every week it’s obviously great for the group going forward and to win things.”
Doing just that has been the name of the game for Celtic ever since Brendan Rodgers walked in the door as manager in the summer of 2016. Four domestic trophies from four speaks to that.
But the bar with this group continues to be set as high as the sky scrapers which surround their winter training camp here in Dubai. The relentless need for success is never far from the mind.
With a Betfred Cup in the bag and an eight-point lead already achieved in the Premiership, garnering another treble this season to become the first Scottish club to win a hat-trick of trophies two seasons on the trot.
“It would be an incredible achievement,” said McGregor. “I think back to last year and how big an achievement that was, winning the treble. If we could go and do it again that would be something really special.
“But we can only look at the next game when we’re back. We’ll then see where that takes us if we prepare right and look to win every one.
“We’ve been so successful until now because we have a good group. We’re all good lads who want to do well and work hard for each other.
“That’s important, that when you have a group like this that you all stick together and we keep pushing on. Last season was so special that it brought the boys even closer together.
“If we can kick on then we could potentially do it again.
“But we need the group to stay focused and stay hungry. But when you feel part of a successful team that’s where you want to stay, you want to keep being successful.
“There are a lot of players who have never won anything in their careers but there’s a massive chance here at Celtic to win a lot of trophies and be successful. You then have that in your name.
“It’s a special place to be and I think all the boys recognise that. We all want to work hard and go well together.”