Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers admits the club are "lucky" to have Moussa Dembele in their ranks, after beating several clubs to his signature in the summer. The 20-year-old took his tally for the campaign to 12 after a double helped secure a Champions League draw with Manchester City at Celtic Park.
The former Fulham youngster put the hosts ahead after just three minutes when he redirected Erik Sviatchenko's header, before putting the Hoops 3-2 ahead two minutes after half time with another fine finish. City equalised for a third time through Nolito but Rodgers' side emerged with much credit from a thrilling Group C encounter.
The Scottish Premiership leaders fought off the likes of Arsenal and Tottenham to sign Dembele, who was constantly linked with a move to north London. Rodgers says thanks to the work of Dembele's agent Mamadi Fofana the club can benefit from his talent.
"We're fortunate to have him," Rodgers said of Dembele after the draw with City, according to Goal.com. "He was coveted by a number of teams but his agent is a clever guy.
"Does he go to a so-called better league and sit on the bench and not get so many games, or does he come to a big club with an opportunity to develop and invest some time into his development, and then step up if that's what he wants to do? He really bullied the back four, but he's more than that – he's got a wonderful touch. You saw his agility for the third goal. He's a huge talent."
Arsenal and Tottenham eventually had to settle on signing alternative strikers during the summer transfer window, after missing out on Dembele. The Gunners acquired Lucas Perez from Deportivo La Coruna, while Spurs secured a deal for Vincent Janssen from AZ Alkmaar.
Prior to the game, Dembele explained how the chance of improved game time at Celtic led to him turning down the rumoured offers from Arsenal and Tottenham. The French-born forward says Rodgers played a primary role in tempting him to move north of the border.
"When you have a manager like Brendan who talks to you about the club and who convinces you to come, it's a massive thing. He told me about the club, about what he wanted to do with me in the future, and I was happy with that," he said, according to The Express. "Brendan is a very big manager and I can't wait to work with him.
"I had a few offers but I didn't have the same one I had with Celtic in terms of football. I think it's the best place for me to be. I signed for Celtic because it's a massive club in Europe. I want to play in the Champions League and I think I can do this here. It would be special."