Brendan Rodgers was announced today as Celtic manager, with the Northern Irishman tied down to a 3-year contract. With the drawn-out process now over, Celtic can look to the future. If European progress is the aim, and if a reported £35 million transfer kitty is to be believed, then Celtic have a big summer transfer window ahead of them.
Ange Postecoglou had his favourite market to shop in during his time at the club, using his knowledge of the Asian markets to pluck a plethora of talent from the J-League to great success. If you were to pinpoint a market which Brendan Rodgers knows best, and one we could look to plunder this summer, then the English market could be where you find us doing our summer shopping.
Having brought in the likes of Scott Sinclair and Moussa Dembele from English football during his first spell in charge, Brendan Rodgers could be keen to dip his hands into the English market once again.
With the riches available in the Premier League, Celtic will still find themselves priced out of moves for players connected to the bigger clubs down south. However, there are still deals to be found, and there are players available who could add to the current crop of talent at the club.
Here are 3 players from down south that Brendan Rodgers could look to bring to Celtic as he embarks on his second revolution in Paradise.
Daniel Amartey – Leicester
Amartey is a powerful defender who can also be utilised as a defensive midfielder. The Ghanaian has been at Leicester for eight seasons before becoming a free agent this summer.
Playing regularly for Rodgers in his final season at the Foxes, Amartey is a player Rodgers knows well and could be an option he could turn to. Whether it be as a centre-back alongside Cameron Carter-Vickers or as a defensive midfielder, the 28-year-old is someone who could certainly do a job for Celtic.
Media outlet TEAMtalk is reporting that Celtic are ready to contact his agent but faces competition from teams in Saudi Arabia and Turkey for the free agent’s signature. The lure of Champions League football could potentially help Celtic beat other sides to his services.
Carlos Borges – Manchester City
19-year-old Portuguese forward Carlos Borges has the potential to become a big hit in world football. His blistering pace and sharp finishing have seen him rip apart the Premier League 2 under the tutelage of Italian coach Enzo Maresca who was linked with the Celtic job before signing on at Leicester.
The teenager is exactly the sort of signing you would see forward-thinking teams like Ajax make. Unproven at the senior level, Borges is in need of a chance to prove his quality, a chance he is unlikely to get a Manchester City despite scoring 24 goals and grabbing 11 assists in just 24 PL2 appearances last season.
His free-scoring form didn’t just stop in the PL2 as he grabbed 4 goals and 6 assists in 6 UEFA Youth League games. Whilst these competitions may not look like much, competitions like the UEFA Youth League are where teams like the previously mentioned Ajax scout and pluck out some of football’s top prospects.
A potential stumbling block to any move could be the size of the transfer fee, as City could demand a large sum of money for the Portuguese. Nottingham Forest who have spent a small fortune since returning to the English top-flight last summer have also been attributed with an interest in the player.
However, Celtic’s links with the City Football Group which allowed the club to grab players like Jeremie Frimpong could help the club in any pursuit of Borges.
Jaidon Anthony – Bournemouth
English winger Jaidon Anthony is another who could become available this summer as Bournemouth look set to sign Justin Kluivert to fill the 23-year-old’s position. Anthony made 30 appearances for the Cherries last season and impressed despite some inconsistent performances.
The youngster found it hard to build up a consistent run of form as he started in only 29% of his 30 appearances. Impressing in bursts, Anthony’s exploits were enough to attract the interest of none other than Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester City back in January.
Possessing a lot of the tools to become a good winger, Anthony has lightning speed and is good with the ball at his feet. Another who needs consistent minutes to realise his full potential, and given Rodgers’ previous interest in him, Celtic could be the place for Anthony to have his breakout season.
One thing is for sure, now that Rodgers is back in through the door the number of players linked with Celtic will increase exponentially by the week. We can now look forward to an interesting summer of transfer speculation as Rodgers builds his team for next season.