Opinion: Celtic should make January move for Hibernian centre-back Ryan Porteous

A report in The Daily Mail last month suggested that Celtic could reignite their summer interest in Aberdeen centre-back Scott McKenna, but they should forget about him and move for Hibernian’s Ryan Porteous instead following his recent form.

What’s the word, then?

Well, The Daily Mail reported in November that the Bhoys were considering going back in for McKenna in the New Year after Aberdeen didn’t want to sell the 22-year-old in the summer, with Fulham said to be ready to move again for Dedryck Boyata themselves having been interested previously.

The Belgium international is still yet to sign a new contract with his current deal due to run out at the end of the season, and with the likes of Jack Hendry and Kristoffer Ajer looking far from reliable options Brendan Rodgers might make signing a new centre-back his January priority.

While Boyata and loanee Filip Benkovic have formed a strong partnership at the heart of the backline, the former Liverpool manager is relying on those two to stay fit to aid his side’s Scottish Premiership title push and their Europa League aspirations now they have reached the knockout stages.

Why should they sign Porteous?

The teenager broke into the Hibs first team last season and has become a regular fixture in the starting XI this term, scoring three goals and providing one assist, as per Transfermarkt, in 22 appearances in all competitions.

He has been a big part of Neil Lennon’s defence who have only conceded 20 goals in their 19 Scottish top-flight fixtures to date, including clean sheets against Celtic and Rangers in successive league matches earlier this month.

In those games, the 6ft 2in central defender bossed the two best strikers in Scottish football in Odsonne Edouard and Alfredo Morelos, and surely his displays won’t have gone unnoticed by Rodgers.