Despite the defeat to Rangers, Celtic are well on the road to a full recovery after last season’s disastrous campaign it’s worthwhile to look and reflect on the squad’s composition and just how much has already changed.

The squad that Ange Postecoglou wants to assemble is by no means anywhere near complete and yet the results so far have been astounding. This has given fans the belief that the title can swing back Celtic’s way in just one season.

It could take until the end of the next summer window to see the final incarnation of what Ange wants to build and what success it will bring but I, like many Celtic fans, am excited to see what the end product looks like.

With the window coming to a close, Celtic still have issues and they need to dive into the transfer market before the window slams shut. One of these issues is overall squad depth across the pitch. With this high-intensity philosophy, injuries are increasingly likely and we need a large enough squad to handle any adversity that may be faced.

Positions that could be vulnerable with limited depth are the 6 and 8 roles in Ange’s system who are expected to do a lot of running and distribution.

At the moment Celtic have Callum McGregor, Ismaila Soro and James McCarthy as senior players for these roles that are guaranteed to be here for the season. Christie has been fantastic in the 8 role when used there, however his future is yet to be confirmed.

A player that could play either of the 6 or 8 roles is Lewis Ferguson. Ferguson typically plays deeper for Aberdeen in a box-to-box role in the middle of the park. He has great fitness and a strong physical profile which is well suited to Ange ball’s high-intensity pressing football. He has just turned 22 but is hugely experienced for his age with 148 career games in the top flight of Scottish football with Hamilton and Aberdeen.

Across these games, he has managed to provide a goal or assist around once every three games despite being more known for his defensive combativeness.

Ferguson could be costly but if Celtic brought him in, he could be utilised at the club for a long period of time so would be a good long-term investment. With Aberdeen crashing out of Europe they also may look to offload their top asset to help fill the financial void left by covid.

Heat Maps

Heat maps below show Ferguson (top) and Scott Brown (bottom) from last season. Ferguson is a lot younger, more mobile and more versatile than Brown with actions all across the field from attacking getting forward to a spoiler in the defensive phase. Ferguson has shown signs of being a strong all-rounder. His flexibility across the middle means Ange could use him in any role he requires at the same time as giving Celtic much-needed depth in the middle of the park.

Celtic Way:

Celtic Way:


For Ferguson I have generated three radars: defensive, on the ball and offensive.

Maximum and minimum data is taken from Scottish Premiership players of the same position from last season.


Here is where Ferguson’s main talents lie. His defensive duel success rate of 65 per cent and aerial duel success rate of 57 per cent was greater than any of Celtic’s central players from last season. As well as this he also outperformed Celtic players on PAdj sliding tackles and shots blocked p90.

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I think these metrics speak to his mobility and physical profile which are impressive for a season where he was only 21 years old. His aerial and physical presence would be welcomed in a Celtic side that can lack physicality at times.

Celtic Way:

On the ball

His on-ball metrics are where Ferguson is weakest and would need to improve the most. Ferguson is competent on the ball, keeping his passing game simple with good passing accuracy and short/medium passing accuracy, profiling similar to Scott Brown.

However, there are issues with his ability to break lines and create with low numbers of key passes, smart passes and deep completions. With Celtic, Ferguson would have more opportunities to improve this skill-set which, if added onto his defensive work rate, could make him similar in profile to Christie.

Celtic Way:


Although his offensive output is not what he is known for, Ferguson still has a few strong offensive attributes. His xG from last season was high at 0.23 p90, although this is primarily linked to his strong penalty-taking ability. He is a threat from air and, like David Turnbull, can also strike a ball well from distance. His goal conversion of 13.3 per cent was better than any of Celtic's central players from last season as well.

Celtic Way:


Ferguson is experienced in the Scottish game for such a young age and could help provide long-term stability for Celtic in the central area. He is strong defensively and mobile enough to play Ange’s high-intensity football.

If he adds line-breaking passes more to his game, he could become one of Celtic’s strongest assets over the coming years if signed.

Now could be the perfect opportunity to sign Ferguson with Aberdeen’s European woes, financial damage of the pandemic and his desire to leave could force his club's hand into letting him go for the right price.

With a recent Scotland call-up, he could jump at the chance to play for Celtic to increase his selection chances and to build relationships with his future international team-mates.