Mikael Lustig will be remembered fondly for his time at Celtic but it could have ended so differently.

The Swede’s debut for the Hoops didn’t go according to plan as he was blamed for a goal against Aberdeen.

However, in typical Lustig fashion, the defender bounced back and became an imperious, consistent figure.

Injuries often got the better of him but he became a fan favourite on his way to making 276 Celtic appearances and winning eight Premiership titles in a row.

Lustig eventually departed in 2019 as he moved to Gent in Belgium. With a lack of first-team right-backs now in their ranks, you could argue that the Bhoys miss his experience.

Well, fortunately, they could sign a like-minded player this summer in the form of Carl Starfelt.

Who would be a better addition?





Celtic have been linked with a £4m switch for the 26-year-old who also hails from Sweden.

Starfelt is a centre-half by trade, an area of the pitch that Lustig has featured in on the odd occasion. Appearing on 67 Hail Hail, journalist Anel Avdic made the following connection: “If he joins Celtic, I see a little bit of potential in him to be a new Mikael Lustig.”

Avdic made that point with a wry smile but it’s hard to ignore the comparisons, especially from a personality viewpoint.

The reporter hailed his work rate and attitude, commenting: “He’s a fantastic man. I only have positive things to say about Carl.”

Lustig’s work rate was second to none as well but in terms of their defensive duels and distribution, they’re fairly similar.

Starfelt won 1.6 aerial duels per match last term, just 0.1 fewer than Celtic’s former Swede in terms of his career average.

Their reading of the play is also vastly similar with the Rubin Kazan defender registering 1.4 interceptions per game, a number that replicates Lustig’s average.

Guess the shirt numbers from Celtic’s famous 2002/03 UEFA Cup side. Let’s start with Mohammed Sylla…

Both reliable and consistent performers, it was perhaps surprising that the latter made Sweden’s European Championship squad at the age of 34, rather than Starfelt.

Either way, the pair are reliable and consistent. You also have to go a long way to find a Swede that’s disappointed while donning the green and white hoops.

All being well, he should be as big a success as Lustig was in Paradise. Ange Postecoglou must ensure the defender becomes a Celtic player.

AND in other news, Celtic open talks to sign “unbelievable” 13-goal gem, he may end Christie’s Hoops stay…

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