Many Scottish football fans will be unaware of who Hakeem Odoffin is.
But if he can get going quickly, Livingston may have secured one of the best bits of January business.
Gary Holt has secured the big defender on a two and a half year deal, with Odoffin arriving from English League Two side Northampton Town on a free transfer. It’s somewhat puzzling that the Cobblers have let him go for nothing. He is a great talent, with plenty of potential and attributes that could see him make it to the top.
The modern centre-half
He only joined Northampton in the summer, but on his limited appearances, he has showed defensive maturity well beyond his 20 years suggest. Despite playing well, the defender was restricted to just 10 starts at Sixfields this season.
This is definitely Northampton’s loss and Livingston may have gained significantly from this deal, especially as it’s on a free.
The 6’3″ defender is able to play both as a centre-half and a right back. He has thrived as a right sided centre-back in Northampton’s favoured 3-5-2 formation, whilst also proving himself to be solid full back when the Cobblers switched to a four back formation.
The ex-Wolves defender is able to build play from the back, and move effectively with the ball at his feet. He has the traits of a great modern defender.
This is why he’s perfect for Livi. Not only does he add a great physical presence in the middle of defence, but he provides great cover on the right. The Lions have lacked deputies on the right and Odoffin will add defensive quality to that area of the park, should he be required to plug gaps in Holt’s side.
Odoffin always gave 100% when playing for the Cobblers. He is a big unit at the back, with plenty of pace and athletic strength. If he can apply the same work ethic in Livi, he will be a key defensive player for the Lions throughout his two and half year contract.