A claim on Celtic transfer target Robbie Brady has emerged which could be music to Ange Postecoglou’s ears at Parkhead.
Celtic have been handed a boost in their pursuit of the free agent with Middlesbrough boss Neil Warnock playing down a deal for the winger.
Warnock has hailed the Republic of Ireland international whilst all but ruling out a move for him due to his lack of fitness.
“I was surprised when he left Burnley. In fact, I think he was offered a new contract, so I’m not sure his agent has got it right for him. We are looking for that type of player on that side, out of contract.
“But you’ve got to be so careful because players like that won’t have been involved in any training with a squad and they’ll be behind. They’ll be training on their own.
Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou must take advantage of Boro’s disinterest to secure a deal to sign Brady in the coming months as he could unearth another Aiden McGeady for the Hoops. An Irish winger with ‘stacks of ability’ and an eye for flair… sound familiar Celtic fans?
After coming up through the ranks at the club, McGeady enjoyed a terrific spell in the first-team before heading out to Russia to join Spartak Moscow for a club record – at the time – fee of £10.80m in 2010. The tricky forward registered seven goals and 14 assists in his last season at the club and, amazingly, is the only natural wide player Celtic have ever sold for more than £1m.
This suggests that Celtic have struggled to find effective wingers who have attracted serious interest from elsewhere since selling McGeady. James Forrest has stayed loyal to the club throughout his career, with over 400 appearances, but it is unclear whether a realistic opportunity to join a Premier League club has ever appeared.
In Brady, Postecoglou could find a talented winger with the ability to beat players and get fans off their seats, much like his fellow countryman McGeady was able to do back in the day. The versatile left-footer endured a difficult, injury-hit, spell with Burnley in the Premier League, but previously stood out for Hull and Norwich.
Brady scored seven and assisted eight in 62 matches for the Canaries, playing at left-back and left-midfield as he featured in both the Premier League and Championship. This highlights both his versatility and his ability to score and create goals, having also provided 14 goals and 21 assists during his time at Hull, whilst using his skills on the ball to open up space and excite supporters.
His set-piece delivery, highlighted in this impressive clip from Norwich’s YouTube channel in 2015, also shows some off the flair he could bring to make Celtic Park go crazy.
Therefore, Postecoglou could find a new wing wizard for his side by snapping up the silky free agent, having now been boosted by the news that Middlesbrough are not actively trying to sign him. Fans would surely love someone running rampant down the left like McGeady.