John Kennedy has confirmed that Celtic are interested in signing Filip Benkovic from Leicester City. The 23-year-old is back at Leicester following a failed loan move with Cardiff and now, Celtic are looking to bring him back to the club where he spent a season loan back in 2018/19.
Kennedy told the media conference ahead of Monday’s game against Hibs that Benkovic was on the shortlist and it was an avenue that the club were exploring.
“Filip is one who we are very well aware of and have spoken about. We know what he is capable of, and he’s a guy who has been here and knows what it’s about.
“So he is certainly on a shortlist of options to strengthen the centre-back position.”
“We want to try and get it done as quickly as possible but it has to be right for everybody. It’s not always as easy as saying ‘that’s who we want’ and we go and do it.
“There are other clubs involved, the player themselves involved. I’m sure Filip or anyone else will have other options. It’s up to us if they are the right person for us, to try and convince them we are the right club for them too.”
Benkovic joined Leicester from Zagreb in 2018 for £13m before being loaned to Celtic, who were then under Rodgers in his third year. Benkovic impressed in this spell and despite Rodgers leaving, the defender continued to play a part in the team. Benkovic made 27 appearances, winning three trophies.
Despite publicly stating that the club are chasing another central defender, Kennedy confirmed that the club had no intention of sending the player back to Brighton. Duffy was pictured jetting out of Celtic’s Dubai camp, fuelling suggestions that he may be on the way back following a poor start to life in Glasgow.
“Shane will be very much with us,” Kennedy said. “We have no intention of sending him back to Brighton.”