Tea-time Update – Lawwell’s Wing and a Prayer as Clock Ticks

We’re on course now for the witching hour and Celtic are being linked with more wide men than a London east end boozer on a Saturday night, as a few other defensive links seem to have lost momentum.

So far today we’ve been linked with Filip Benkovic on loan only to hear the favourite to get the Leicester City defender is now Bristol City. This would be disappointing but with no deal done yet it’s hard to believe if Benkovic has the choice he wouldn’t choose Paradise over Ashton Gate. That’s IF he’s given the choice, Brendan.

Victor Wanyama was all over the news this morning until Celtic themselves poured cold water on the London Evening Standard’s claims Celtic and Spurs were locked in talks regarding a return for our former player. Peter’s heart must have been racing when that one broke.

Since then we’ve had an old summer story link come to the fore again as The Athletic’s Dominic Fifield has claimed Crystal Palace and Celtic are vying for Jordan Ibe. The Bournemouth wideman has six months left on his deal with the English Premier League side. If it’s going to happen the Celts will only be offering a six month loan deal while Palace seem to be looking a longer term approach. Looks like the player himself would also prefer Croydon to Glasgow.

Here’s what the Athletic had to say.

“CRYSTAL PALACE and CELTIC UPDATE – Both clubs are considering moves for Jordon Ibe at AFC Bournemouth, who has entered the final six months of his contract, has no future at the club and is effectively available for a relatively small fee. Ibe is a south Londoner and would be keen to move to Palace, but it is far from certain yet that a deal will be agreed. It is understood Celtic would only be offering a six-month deal at first.”

Ibe was a big money buy at a reported £16million back in 2016 but he’s really struggled to make an impact on the south coast. Celts were certainly reported as having an interest in the summer it may well be this story is re-hashing old copy but the length of deal on offer would sound credible at least.

Following on from the wideman links, the latest from Keith Downie at Skysports is that Celtic have made an approach to sign Newcastle winger Christian Atsu. This also appears to be a loan deal until the end of the season.

Atsu has had interest credited already from Nottingham Forest and Blackburn in the English Championship but this is the first reports of anything from Celtic. He’s a player who seems surplus to requirements on Tyneside but he’s played 22 games this year as so at least he wouldn’t be a player who would take much time to get up to match speed.

The Athletic are also reporting that 18 year old Everton winger Anthony Gordon was approached for a loan until the end of the season. They’ve been saying Neil Lennon has been impressed with the player and the scouting team had been down looking closely at the player. Unfortunately new Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti also sees what Lennon sees and has blocked the move. Ancelotti seems to think Gordon will have a chance at first team action for Everton and isn’t willing to lose the player in this window.

It certainly seems that injuries to Elyounoussi and Mikey Johnston may have sharpened Celtic’s resolve when it comes to attracting cover for the wide areas. Sadly that doesn’t seem to be extending to any defensive reinforcements.

Celtic have also confirmed via the club’s website, the sale of Lewis Morgan to David Beckham’s Inter Miami franchise. They may sound like a five-a-side team who would go head to head with Bayer Neverlosen down your local Powerleague but apparently it’s a bona fide soccer team.

Five paragraphs summed up Morgan’s Celtic story.

“Celtic Football Club have confirmed that Lewis Morgan has signed for American Major League Soccer club, Inter Miami.

“The 23-year-old winger joined the Hoops two years ago in the January transfer window from St Mirren, but immediately went back on loan to the Paisley club for the remainder of that season, and he also teamed up again with former Buddies’ boss, Jack Ross with a loan deal at Sunderland.

“Morgan made his Hoops debut coming on from the bench against Alashkert in Armenia in a 3-0 UEFA Champions League qualifying round win.

“That was the first of 31 games, 11 starts and 20 substitute appearances, for the club, during which he scored two goals.

“Everyone at Celtic Football Club wishes Lewis all the very best in his time in Miami.”

With six hours left there is more than enough time for the Celts to be getting some business done. Could it be Ibe or will it be Atsu? Is Benkovic still a chance?

The only one that seems discounted is Wanyama but luckily I never believe a word the Celtic board says so I’ve not extinguished all my hope just yet.

Niall J


Irish Passport reminder for Celtic fans as Glasgow Delivers Brilliant Brexit Day Message…see HERE.

Casualties and Celtic’s Transfer Window End Game – Niall J…see HERE.

Transfer Window Latest – Filip Benkovic and Loan Move News…see HERE.

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About Author

As a Bellshill Bhoy I was taken to my first Celtic game in the summer of 1987. It was Billy McNeill’s return to Celtic Park as manager and Celtic lost 5-1 to Arsenal . I thought I was a jinx, I think my Grandfather might have thought the same. It was the finest gift anyone ever gave me when he walked me through Parkhead's gates.

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