Celtic are likely to be dealt a blow well in advance of next summer according to emerging reports.
According to Dan Sheldon at The Athletic, there is a belief at St Mary’s Stadium that Hoops loanee Mohamed Elyounoussi will come good as a player who could potentially make his mark in the Premier League.
He claims that the Saints hierarchy pushed through a return to Celtic Park very swiftly due to pressure from the Scottish champions, so there’s a very high chance the £16m signing gets a crack under Ralph Hassenhuttl in 2021.
Therefore, Bhoys chief Peter Lawwell and head of football Nick Hammond ought to be on the lookout for a successor now they know such news.
Perhaps the answer lies with a target they’ve already looked at during the latest transfer window – Newcastle United outcast Christian Atsu.
It’s thought that the 28-year-old will depart the Magpies on loan before Friday’s domestic deadline and it appears that his time is done in the northeast as he enters the final portion of his £30k-per-week contract.
One major positive to this is the fact that the Ghanian winger is on half of the reported £60k-per-week wages of Elyounoussi, so Lawwell would be saving a ton of money even if he was able to keep hold of the Southampton ace.
Atsu seems like a viable alternative having averaged 1.2 shots, 1.1 dribbles and one shot per game across the course of his career, via WhoScored – and that’s without being able to settle anywhere either.
The 28-year-old misfit has been lauded as a “wonderful” player by Ghana assistant Maxwell Konadu in the past whilst former Bournemouth teammate Adam Smith hailed him as a “talented player” with plenty of speed.
Parkhead has proven to be a solid foundation for forgotten players to revive their careers as seen with Fraser Forster and Scott Sinclair, so a move for Atsu could well work out for all parties next summer.
It has to be considered, at the very least.
AND in other news, Celtic chief Peter Lawwell must tie £40k-p/w MONSTER down ASAP…