Celtic are reportedly open to allowing midfielder James McCarthy to depart in January, with the Republic of Ireland international having failed to make an impact at Parkhead to date.
Reports at the end of last month suggested that the Old Firm outfit are keen to move on the 32-year-old in the winter window, with the playmaker seemingly not part of manager Ange Postecoglou’s plans having struggled for game time of late.
The former Crystal Palace man – who arrived in Glasgow on a free transfer in the summer of 2021 – could well prove difficult to shift, however, with his existing deal at the club set to run until 2025.
Journalist Pete O’Rourke – in an interview with Football FanCast – has now given his thoughts regarding a potential departure for the 42-cap dud, with the transfer insider suggesting that the best scenario for all concerned could well be an exit.
Asked whether the experienced asset has been a disastrous signing for the Hoops, the reliable source stated: “I wouldn’t say it’s a disaster. Obviously, the move hasn’t worked out for either party really.
“James McCarthy just hasn’t been given enough minutes and when he has played he’s maybe not performed at his best level either, as well. So it’s probably looking like a parting of the ways is the best for both parties in this one.”
As O’Rourke alluded too, it could well be that time is up for the £14k-per-week dud at Celtic Park, with McCarthy having been unable to establish himself in the side over the past year or so at his boyhood club.
Now something of a forgotten man with the Bhoys, the one-time Everton star has made just 27 appearances for his current side over the past 12 months or so, with only six of those outings having come from the start.
This season, in particular, has proven somewhat frustrating as far as the player is concerned, with the 5 foot 11 brute having made just five substitute appearances in all competitions, totalling only 62 minutes of action.
The arrival of the likes of Oliver Abildgaard and Aaron Mooy have only served to shunt the ageing talent further down the pecking order, with even the injury absence of captain Callum McGregor having failed to lead to a more prominent role for McCarthy.
The Glasgow-born ace has seen his woes compounded of late after suffering a “significant” injury, in the words of his manager, with the hope being that such an issue won’t prevent an exit, with Celtic likely keen to get the peripheral asset of the wage bill.
While it may not be easy to find a suitor for the player, Postecoglou and co simply need to be ruthless and ditch the midfield maestro sooner rather than later.