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Celtic must revive their chase for PSG’s Mitchel Bakker

If Celtic are to compete with the best again they need to dig deep and overhaul their squad during the upcoming summer transfer window.

It’s all change for the Hoops’ hierarchy but there should be plenty of new faces in terms of the playing staff at Parkhead too.

On the chalkboard

One player who will never play for Celtic again is Diego Laxalt.

The Uruguayan arrived on loan from AC Milan last summer in a deal that looked attractive on paper.

It’s not often you sign someone from an elite club in Europe with plenty of international experience to their name. However, he left Glasgow amid strong criticism for his performances.

Laxalt didn’t play in the final five league matches of the season and after the way he was torn apart in the Scottish Cup against Rangers, you can understand why.

Described as a “horror show” by ACSOM presenter Paul John Dykes, he was run ragged by Joe Aribo down Celtic’s left-hand side.

As a result of his poor end to the season, Celtic performed a U-turn on the player and will not welcome him back next term.

Brilliant Bakker

Last summer Celtic were interested in signing PSG left-back Mitchel Bakker on loan.

They registered a bid for the defender in September but that was swiftly knocked back by Paris officials.

Should Celtic sign Bakker this summer?

Definitely!

Definitely!

No way!

No way!

A month later they ended up welcoming Laxalt through the door in a deal that never really amounted to much.

With the Uruguay international returning to Milan, they now have an opportunity to go back and get Bakker.

PSG may have rejected a bid last summer but he now looks as though he’ll be available to sign.

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We'll start with an easier one, who is this Celtic academy player?

French outlet MaxiFoot suggests this week that he won’t be considered next season and will be free to leave.

Bakker is valued at €30m (£26m) but if a loan deal can be arranged, it would be a superb move for the Celtic hierarchy to complete.

For starters, he’d be a pretty hefty upgrade on Laxalt offensively and defensively.

The Dutchman is far more disciplined in defence and despite making 1.4 tackles per game, 0.3 fewer than Laxalt, he commits fewer fouls (0.6 vs 1.9).

The Uruguayan’s stay at Celtic was littered with errors so bringing in a player who is more competent in the challenge is certainly a good sign.

Diego-Laxalt-Celtic-John-Kennedy-Hoops-Bhoys-SPFL-Scottish-Premiership-Dundee-United

Described as a “tenacious tackler” by scout Jacek Kulig, the defender is also “extremely dominant in the air.”

However, Bakker’s qualities extend beyond the defensive side of the game.

Writing about the youngster, Kulig added: “[He is a] modern defender, who combines strength with good technique and passing.”

That’s evident in the fact he’s completed over 90% of his passes this season. That’s considerably more than Laxalt who managed 77.1%.

In committing fewer fouls and completing more of his passes, Bakker looks calmer and composed than Laxalt ever was at Paradise. That would make the signing a triumph.

AND in other news, Forget Soro: Celtic already have their Scott Brown heir in 6 ft 6 “man mountain”…

Article title: Celtic must revive their chase for PSG’s Mitchel Bakker

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