Following Kieran Tierney’s transfer to Premier League outfit Arsenal, Celtic now need to go out and find themselves a replacement.
Finding a replacement for the 22-year-old Scotland international will be by no means easy and it remains to be seen whether the Bhoys would like to recruit his replacement from inside Scotland or from elsewhere.
Should they wish to conduct their business in Scotland, Kilmarnock’s Greg Taylor could be an option they consider.
What do the numbers say?
— Owen Brown (@OwenJamesBrown) August 7, 2019
When comparing the two players data radars, it is clear as day that Tierney is on a different level entirely to Taylor but that is not to say Taylor is useless, in fact he is very far from that.
The 21-year-old is one of the most promising young defenders in the Scottish game and there is a lot to like about his game.
The reason for the differences in stats can be put down to the tactical differences between Celtic and Kilmarnock who are two very different sides.
Tierney’s xG build-up (the expected likelihood of a goal based on possessions before the key pass/assist/shot) for example, is three times that of Taylor’s.
This would suggest that Celtic are creating more chances and building play-up more using the full-backs but also it highlights that Tierney himself might be good at leading to chances.
It further suggests that Taylor is not given as much freedom as Tierney is which again comes back to the tactics in place.
Despite the tactical restrictions Taylor was under he still managed to provide four assists for teammates, which is just one less than what Tierney managed.
When it comes to tackling, their success rates are largely similar whilst Taylor is better in the air and turns the ball over less.
Tierney’s numbers are no doubt helped by the system he played in and we believe that if Taylor was playing in the Celtic system, where he would have more freedom, the numbers where he is behind Tierney in could be improved upon and he could be a real asset.
How much can Celtic expect to pay?
Celtic can expect to probably pay somewhere between £1-1.5 million for Taylor if he is the player they decide to go in for.
With the money they have reportedly receieved for Tierney, such a sum is ultimately pocket change to them.
Taylor certainly has a real upside and if he continues to progress, there is no reason why Celtic couldn’t make a nice sum off him a few years down the line.