Celtic have already enjoyed a busy summer of recruitment at Parkhead, with manager Ange Posteoglou overseeing eight major incomings thus far, with more additions potentially on the way before the window is out.
One man who could well be the next arrival in Glasgow is Chelsea midfielder Ross Barkley, with reports earlier this month suggesting that the Old Firm giants had made an “offer” to sign the 28-year-old before deadline day.
The 33-cap England international has only recently come to the end of what had been a frustrating spell at Stamford Bridge, with the Blues having moved to rip up his existing contract with a year still left to run on the deal.
The former Everton man – who arrived in west London on a £15m deal back in 2018 – has struggled to secure a regular role at his now former club, making 100 appearances in all competitions over the last four and a half years.
Despite falling out of favour for both club and country – for whom he has not featured since October 2019 – the £96k-per-week playmaker still offers undoubted “quality” – in the words of Thomas Tuchel – with a move to Scotland potentially set to be the kickstart that he needs to his floundering career.
Much like with the case of form Three Lions teammate Joe Hart, Barkley could well spark a real turnaround in fortunes by joining Postecoglou’s side, with time firmly on his side to recover his form.
Once compared to the likes of Paul Gascoigne and Wayne Rooney, the £10.8m-rated ace had previously sparkled during his time at Goodison Park, chipping in with 55 goal contributions in 179 games across all competitions for the Toffees.
The dynamic gem could well thrive as that link between the midfield and attack for the Scottish champions, taking on the role that is currently occupied by the highly sought, Matt O’Riley.
The Denmark U21 international – who joined from MK Dons back in January on a £1.5m deal – is reportedly the subject of interest from a host of elite clubs across Europe, with Manchester United said to be one of those who are watching the 21-year-old closely.
The London-born starlet has also recently admitted that there is interest in his signature at present, albeit with Celtic likely to demand a fee of around £20m if he is to be moved on before deadline day.
The 6 foot 2 youngster has caught the eye in his brief time in Glasgow to date, scoring four goals and providing five assists in just 25 games in all competitions for the club, including three assists in just five games in the new season.
In Barkley – who is also 6 foot 2 – the club could well find an ideal fit to replace his coveted star, with his arrival set to more than soften the blow of O’Riley’s potential exit.
While they may have to fend off bitter rivals Rangers in order to land his signature, it could well prove to be another Postecoglou transfer masterstroke, particularly with the player now available on a free transfer.