Celtic signed no fewer than six players during the summer transfer window but it seems one name escaped their grasp – for the time being at least…
According to The Sun’s Alan Nixon, the defending Scottish champions could revisit their pursuit of Charlton Athletic starlet Alfie Doughty, either in January or next year.
He claims that the club are playing the long game after having bids knocked back throughout the last few months.
It’s been previously claimed that the Hoops had at least two offers rejected in September and that they had been planning to offer £800k for him in a third ploy, but evidently, that did not come to fruition.
The 20-year-old could be signed on a pre-contract for free in the winter window.
Neil Lennon did get an addition in the wing-back position having landed AC Milan outcast Diego Laxalt on loan, though that is merely a temporary switch at this stage which means he could be in the same scenario next summer.
And waiting for it too all unfold over the young League One winger could prove to be a masterstroke from Celtic chief Peter Lawwell as instead of paying close to seven figures for what could be a generational talent, he may well get him for free in the next three to nine months.
Doughty has begun the season in superb form for the Addicks, scoring one goal in four league starts whilst also averaging 2.8 tackles, two key passes, 1.8 dribbles and 1.3 shots per game, via WhoScored.
This makes him seem like the ideal man for that left wing-back position long-term.
Former Kingstonian boss Leigh Dynan gave the youngster his debut in the men’s game, and once dubbed Doughty a “tremendous footballer” with a “big future” before also adding: “There’s a diamond there to be polished. I can assure you that.”
Lawwell’s shrewd stance could mean that it’s the Bhoys’ diamond to polish and by the time he arrives at Parkhead, he may well have enjoyed a full season under his belt – another plus for Lennon.
They must revisit this deal in January.
AND in other news, Brendan Rodgers flop has finally found his feet…