Celtic completed the signing of Armstrong Okoflex from Arsenal on Saturday, after the 16-year-old spent the summer with the Scottish club.
Celtic officially announced the signing this weekend, ahead of their clash with old rivals Rangers. The transfer has been a long time coming, after Okoflex rejected scholarship terms with Arsenal back in July, and travelled to Celtic Park to take part in training sessions with the club.
Clearly there were some delays in finding complete agreement, for whatever reason. Now it’s all announced, Okoflex is excited to get going.
“It feels good for it to be all official,” he said. “This is a massive club and one that plays in Europe, while Celtic are also known for bringing young players through their Academy to their first team. I feel I have a chance to progress here and this is the right club for me at the moment.
“I had a meeting with Brendan Rodgers and he was very convincing. He’s a great manager with all the success he’s had at previous clubs and at Celtic, and he was one of the big factors in coming here.”
First season targets
Okoflex is clearly ambitious about breaking into the first team as soon as possible, confirming his aim to make his debut before his 17th birthday (next March).
“This season I would like to make my debut,” he said. “My personal target it to make my debut before I turn 17. I’m trying to aim high. If it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t, and I’ll just keep working.”
With all the talent in the Arsenal academy at the moment, it definitely doesn’t seem likely Okoflex would’ve been able to make his senior debut with his former club this season. The Gunners have a lot of academy stars to keep happy at the moment, particularly in the forward positions.
There’s obviously Reiss Nelson, currently on loan at Hoffenheim. Then Eddie Nketiah can play out wide, Bukayo Saka, Xavier Amaechi, Emile Smith Rowe, the list goes on. That’s in addition to the competition already in the first team squad. Hopefully Armstrong has more success breaking through in Scotland.