John Guidetti has been one of the most sought after players in soccer following Sweden’s win in the Under-21 European Championship. The 23-year-old striker was available, as his contract with Manchester City had expired. Celta Vigo were able to get the outspoken Swede to sign a five-year deal with the club as they continue to push for a Europa League spot.
Guidetti has a fascinating background. Born in Stockholm, he spent several years of his childhood in Kenya as his parents worked for a Swedish school in the country. Guidetti has spoken several times about his upbringing in Africa and how he used to play without any shoes and that it was a great time in his life.
— King Magazine (@King_Magazine) June 29, 2015
He represented Brommapojkarna in Sweden and was signed by Manchester City in 2008 shortly before turning 16. He never got a chance with City and was loaned out to several clubs. With the strikers in the City squad, players like Carlos Tevez, Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko, just to name a few, it’s no surprise Guidetti wasn’t able to break into the lineup.
He had a very successful loan spell at Feyenoord in 2011-12 as he scored 20 goals in 23 appearances. Hopes were high for Guidetti as he headed back to City, but the next 21 months were filled with injuries and illness for the young Swede.
He finally made his return to the pitch in January 2014 as he went on loan to Stoke City. He only played eight games for Stoke and didn’t get along with the coaching staff. Last season he went on loan again, this time to Scottish champions Celtic. He had a good start to the loan spell in Scotland, but after expressing some criticism of the coach and making it public that he wouldn’t sign long-term with Celtic, he ended up on the bench. He had 15 goals in 35 appearances.
Guidetti had a great Under-21 European Championship as Sweden won the tournament after penalties against Portugal in the final. Guidetti scored a couple of vital goals for the Swedes and was as outspoken as ever in the media, including rapping in a post-game interview. The success spurred the rumors surrounding Guidetti and clubs like Tottenham, Schalke 04 and Lazio.
But it was Celta Vigo that managed to sign the Swedish striker. The club presented him on their website on Saturday. Guidetti signed a five-year deal for Celta that finished in eighth place last season in the Spanish La Liga. The club has already signed Iago Aspas from Liverpool and Daniel Wass from Evian.
— RC Celta de Vigo (@rccelta_oficial) July 11, 2015
With the addition of Guidetti and Aspas, who has played for Celta before, they definitely have the potential to keep pushing up the table and challenge for a Europa League spot.
Guidetti has a nose for the goal and expectations will he high, as Celta needs a prolific goalscorer in the lineup. He’s strong on the ball and is very good inside the penalty box. He’s also very good on set pieces and has scored some great free-kick goals throughout his young career.
Guidetti was unveiled to the fans on Sunday at Estadio de Balaidos. Guidetti has one cap for the Swedish national team in addition to 23 caps (12 goals) for the U-21 team, and is held in very high regard by the fans, as many hope that he will be the next Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Although that might be asking a bit too much, there’s no doubt that he has all the tools to become a very good player.
Celta is set to head to Germany on a pre-season tour next week to play four games between July 17-25, including a game against Turkish side Galatasaray.