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Celtic: Pete O’Rourke issues Josip Juranovic transfer verdict

Celtic defender Josip Juranovic has been linked with an exit from Parkhead in recent weeks, amid interest from the Premier League.

What’s the word?

Recent reports have suggested that the Croatia international – who only arrived in Glasgow last summer on a £2.5m deal – is the subject of interest from Chelsea, while Manchester United are also said to be keeping tabs as they look to solve their right-back woes.

The report suggests that the Old Firm giants ‘would consider a sale’ for the 27-year-old in the current window, albeit with the Scottish champions set to demand more than £15m for a player who had also attracted interest from La Liga side, Atletico Madrid.

Journalist Pete O’Rourke has now delivered his verdict on the 20-cap gem’s future – in an interview with Football FanCast – with the suggestion being that it could prove difficult to retain the defender’s services due to the pull of such elite clubs.

The transfer insider stated: “It just shows how well he has done that he’s attracting this reported interest from Manchester United and Chelsea. I’m not too sure how high up the list he is for those two clubs so I’m sure Postecoglou will be pretty hopeful he can keep him,

“But if the interest does firm up from Premier League clubs, Celtic would find it very hard to keep hold of him”.

Tierney 2.0

That final line will no doubt set alarm bells ringing among those of a Hoops persuasion, with the Scottish Premiership outfit no doubt fearing that they could lose a player who had been so crucial to the title triumph last term.

Plucked by manager Ange Postecoglou from Legia Warsaw 12 months ago, the 5 foot 8 full-back has since gone on to score five goals and provide two assists in 38 appearances in all competitions, offering invaluable versatility to feature on either side of the defence.

Such has been his impact thus far, the £16k-per-week ace was even labelled “outstanding” by pundit John Hartson on Sunday, albeit with the Welshman somewhat critical of the player’s agent for potentially trying to engineer a departure so soon into his Celtic career.

As O’Rouke alluded to, however, the pull of the English top-flight is so often too hard to resist for those at Parkhead, with there having been a number of key figures who moved south of the border in recent times.

Would you be disappointed if Celtic sold Juranovic this summer?

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Yes

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Current Liverpool star, Virgil van Dijk, for example, left for Southampton back in 2015, with midfield colossus Victor Wanyama having also made the switch to the Saints two years earlier.

Stuart Armstrong is another to have traded Celtic Park for St Mary’s in recent years, while both Kristoffer Ajer and Odsonne Edouard opted to join Brentford and Crystal Palace, respectively, last summer.

While there are others who have been seduced by the dizzying heights of the Premier League, arguably the most notable and most expensive departure has been that of fellow defender Kieran Tierney, with the Scotland international having joined Arsenal on a £25m deal back in 2019.

1 of 10

First up in this Celtic transfer quiz, which club did Celtic sign Christopher Jullien from?

Despite his obvious affection for his boyhood club, the committed, rampaging full-back could simply not turn down the chance to try his arm in arguably the best league in Europe, with the bigger stage – and likely the bigger wage – too good to pass up on.

If even an academy graduate such as Tierney could not take the loyal route of remaining in Glasgow, what chance do Postecoglou and co really have of keeping Juranovic?

Article title: Celtic: Pete O’Rourke issues Josip Juranovic transfer verdict

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