Celtic news round-up: Parkes chase, Ben Summers pro deal

Karamoko Dembele

Celtic fans are no stranger to positive news and good fortune. 

Only a few weeks ago they were confirmed as the SPFL winners for a ninth successive season as Neil Lennon's men beat Rangers to yet another title.

If Coronavirus wasn't a thing, there would have a mass celebration outside Parkhead but as it happens, supporters and players had to celebrate for something a little more subdued.

Providing they manage to win ten in a row, the celebrations will probably be even large, but will new players be added or will some leave by then? That's up to the powers that be.

Kristoffer Ajer continues to be linked away but on Tuesday, there was a succession of encouraging updates from within the club and from outside sources.

Two of them involved the club's academy set-up while there was an encouraging transfer update.

Celtic favourites for Parkes

Lennon's side are clearly in the market for a striker this summer, presumably worried by the future of Odsonne Edouard.

The manager wants a new deal done but replacements have seemingly been lined up with links to Livingston's Lyndon Dykes and Peterborough's Ivan Toney emerging.

West Brom and Rangers seem to be at the front of the queue for Toney but Celtic are in pole position for another forward.

That happens to be West Ham starlet Veron Parkes, an 18-year-old forward with 11 goals to his name in the U18 Premier League this term.

A versatile individual capable of playing anywhere across the front line, he could sign for a minimal compensation fee once the transfer window opens according to Football Insider.

The teenager is out of contract at the end of the season but the Bhoys face competition from Monaco and New York Red Bulls, as well as two clubs in the Netherlands.

He is reportedly inspired by the impact Jeremie Frimpong has made since moving to Glasgow.

Celtic youngster signs new deal

It may not be Edouard or Ajer signing a new deal, but the club did conclude a promising renewal on Tuesday.

16-year-old Ben Summers put pen to paper on his first professional terms with the club, signing a new three-year contract with Celtic.

The attacking midfielder looks to have a bright future and will now aim to follow in the footsteps of the likes of Callum McGregor, James Forest and Mikey Johnston, academy graduates who helped the Bhoys win the title this season.

In the past, Summers has played Celtic legend Tommy Burns in a feature-length documentary about the former footballer. A star of the small screen, the teenager will now be hoping to make a name for himself on the pitch, rather than on TV.

Karamoko Dembele shoots

Recognition for Dembele

There was further good news for Celtic's academy on Tuesday with teenager sensation Karamoko Dembele being listed among the nominees for the Golden Boy award. 

The Englishman features alongside some of the most renowned names in European football as he battles it out to be crowned the best U21 player in Europe. 

Also on the longlist are the likes of Jonathan David, Alphonso Davies, Ansu Fati and Phil Foden so it would be quite remarkable if the Celtic teen took home the gong.

The youngster burst onto the scene as a diminutive 16-year-old last season, replacing Oliver Burke against Hearts in May 2019 but since then, he has only gone onto make two appearances.

That being said, he is clearly a player with immense potential, especially if he's being recognised among some of the most promising young players in the world. 

Dembele's current terms in Glasgow expire in a year's time so Celtic fans might want to monitor his future very closely over the next 12 months.

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