Celtic are refusing to release Olivier Ntcham from his current deal, which is holding up the transfer to AEK Athens. Journalist Giannis Chorianopoulos gave an update saying that the club were refusing to let him leave for nothing so as it stands there will be no deal to take the Frenchman to Greece.
Athens club officials had been keen on signing the player on a free agent; however, Celtic’s new powerbroker Dominic McKay and manager Ange Postecoglou appear to be against letting the player go for nothing.
AEK Athens will check other CMF options except Olivier Ntcham. Greek club’s officials believe that Celtic will not let him go as a free agent. So, at the moment, no Ntcham for AEK!#AEK #Celtic #CelticFC
— Giannis Chorianopoulos (@choria80) June 27, 2021
The Frenchman joined from Manchester City for £4.5m in 2017. The player blew hot and cold across a three and a half year spell before his loan move to Marseille in January. It looked as if he would make the switch permanently back to France but endured a torrid time resulting in him coming back to Glasgow. However, AEK Athens appeared willing to pay him £20,000-per-week and a move to Greece may appeal to the player. Celtic will hold out for a fee from the Greeks and even may be touting Ntcham to other clubs.
Kris Ajer and Odsonne Edouard are almost certain to be gone by the start of next season with Ryan Christie also likely to attract interest. Ntcham has struggled in the last year after finishing the 2019/20 campaign strongly. He was linked with a move during that season to Porto and West Ham but the last season and his failed move to Marseille has resulted in Ntcham’s stock falling.
There is another argument that Ange may fancy retaining Ntcham, who is an extremely talented player on his day. The manager may see the 25-year-old as an option to utilise in his rebuild after a spell on the periphery of the first team picture at Celtic.