Celtic pursuit of Husein Balic doesn’t bode well for Lewis Morgan

This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…

Celtic are interested in signing Austrian U21 international Husein Balic this summer, as reported by The Daily Mail.

What’s the story?

The 23-year-old, who was eligible for the recent UEFA Under-21 Championship in Italy, is said by the paper to have impressed in the tournament and is now being tracked by Celtic and a number of English clubs.

The report states he is valued at around £700,000, currently in the final year of his contract at Austrian top-flight side St Polten.

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What could it mean for others at Celtic?

The Austrian scored five goals and assisted five times in 34 appearances for St Polten last season, suggesting he could be a good attacking option for the Hoops next term. Celtic have recently signed Boli Bolingoli-Mbombo from the same division, so clearly feel it’s a useful scouting ground.

Balic plays on the left wing and so would be arriving into an already crowded position at the club, with Mikey Johnston, Scott Sinclair, Daniel Arzani and Lewis Morgan all vying for a spot in Neil Lennon’s first-team squad.

Of that group, Morgan looks like the odd man out, having only started once for the club since arriving from St Mirren last summer.

Brendan Rodgers sent him out on loan to Sunderland in the second half of last season but he couldn’t become a key member of the team there either, scoring just twice.

With Johnston getting plenty of action in pre-season, Sinclair consistently netting goals over the last three years and Arzani set to return from injury for the second year of his two-season loan deal, it leaves Morgan, who signed for Rodgers in January 2018, on the outside looking in.

A move for Balic would surely be the final blow and effectively end his Celtic career.

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