Eddie Howe isn’t even in the building yet but Celtic are already targeting players with the view to him being appointed.
A couple of players have been linked with joining Howe at the Bhoys, including Bournemouth defender Steve Cook.
The new manager’s first priority when he walks through the door will be to address the futures of a number of individuals at the club.
Kristoffer Ajer has attracted admirers from elsewhere on a repeated basis while Odsonne Edouard has long been tipped to leave. West Ham came calling for the Frenchman in January, while it’s thought that Liverpool are now also interested in his services.
Losing him would be a monumental blow to Celtic’s chances of reclaiming their dominance of Scottish football. Edouard is their top scorer with 20 goals this term, so trying to replace such a prolific forward won’t be easy.
Celtic will need to ensure they have contingency plans in place because those behind the Frenchman in the pecking order aren’t particularly full of goals. Albian Ajeti has just six to his name since joining the Hoops last summer, while Patryk Klimala has three goals all season.
If Howe is given the Celtic job, the Bhoys could welcome Josh King to Paradise this summer. That’s according to The Sun, who suggested that the 43-year-old will look to make the Norwegian one of his first signings as Hoops manager.
King left Bournemouth for Everton in January on a six-month contract and thus could move on a free transfer when the summer window opens.
Capped 54 times by Norway, the forward has plenty of experience at the top level and has a history of scoring goals in one of the best leagues in world football. The 29-year-old is yet to find the net in Everton colours but has 48 Premier League goals to his name throughout his career.
This season hasn’t been great to King but clearly he is a clever striker with plenty of qualities, and you sense that he could thrive in Scottish football. Like Edouard, he has nice feet and is also powerful, using his robust frame to bustle past opponents.
You only need to heed the words from Vidar Riseth, one of his former teammates, for an indication of what he could bring to Glasgow.
“He has all the attributes any striker needs,” the ex-Hoops player began. “I have played with him and against him and I know all about his qualities. If there is a chance for Celtic to get him then they must take it because he would be an incredible signing for them.
“He’d be a great signing. I am talking about a top striker. He has so many qualities and he has done so well for the national team, too,” he concluded.
There may be an element of bias to Riseth’s words, but reuniting King with Howe could be a masterstroke. In terms of replacing Edouard, there would certainly be worse signings than the 29-year-old.