Celtic sign striker Amido Balde on four-year deal

 

Striker Amido Balde hopes to experience Champions League nights such as when Celtic defeated Barcelona last year.

Facing the media after signing from Vitoria Guimaraes on a four-year contract, the 22-year-old said: "I have seen a lot of matches of Celtic.

"I want to feel the same way as my team-mates did against Barcelona. I felt proud when I saw that game. I saw the Celtic supporters and I loved that.

"I am very happy to sign for Celtic. I want to give my best day by day."

The 6ft 4in Guinea-Bissau-born striker scored nine goals in 27 games this season as Vitoria finished ninth in their domestic league.

They are one of the best clubs in Europe and they are going to play in the Champions league. Because of that it is fantastic for me to be here

Amido Balde

Having compared his playing style to that of Emmanuel Adebayor, Balde added: "I am here to score. Celtic is a very big club with a lot of good players.

"They are one of the best clubs in Europe and they are going to play in the Champions league. Because of that it is fantastic for me to be here."

Balde signed a two-year contract with Vitoria last summer following his release by Sporting Lisbon.

While with Sporting, he had loan spells with Santa Clara in the Portuguese second tier, Badajoz in the Spanish Third Division and Cercle Brugge in Belgium's top flight.

Asked if he could have imagined moving to the Scottish champions after leaving Sporting, he said: "I am a fighter. I believe in myself. I work hard to achieve [things]. I worked hard to be in this position. I deserve it.

"That's why I am wearing a Celtic shirt."

While fellow Celtic striker Gary Hooper attracts interest from Hull, Balde insists he is keen to link up with the Englishman.

"I am here, at 22 years old, to learn from Gary Hooper, to play with him," he said.

"I've watched him work hard on the pitch and I love the way he plays."

Acknowledging another Portuguese goalscorer's contribution to Celtic, the new recruit said: "I know Jorge Cadete from Sporting Lisbon. He was a very good striker.

"I would like to follow him and do more than him [at Celtic] if I can."