Celtic news round-up: Ajer latest, Forster alternative

Kristoffer Ajer

This week has been predominantly made up of Odsonne Edouard news.

Whether it’s potential replacements for the forward or just general news about his potential departure, he has been at the centre of all things Celtic.

The 27-goal forward is someone Neil Lennon desperately wants to stay at the club but that might not be down to him with attention coming from the Premier League.

Though, good news did emerge yesterday when Borussia Dortmund ruled themselves out of the race to sign him.

Erling Haaland was one of the reasonings – a perfectly valid excuse given his quite truly astounding record this campaign.

However, Friday was more about Kristoffer Ajer, a further Celtic star linked with the exit door.

To find out exactly what we’re talking about, read today’s Hoops round-up below…

Ajer boost

The Norwegian has been linked with Leicester in recent times but he’s also been attracting the interest of Italian giants AC Milan.

According to former Celtic man Vidar Riseth, there is definite attention from Milan who could look to conclude a deal. Speaking to the Daily Record, he confirmed that but backed Ajer to stay at Parkhead.

Riseth suggested the centre-back could command a significant fee of £30m, ensuring Celtic rake in a mighty profit from the initial £650,000 they spent on him as a teenager

It’s not a surprise to see the Norway international linked away given the performance he’s displayed during the 49 matches he’s played this term. The ball-playing abilities he possesses means he suits a plethora of teams around the globe, particularly Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester.

Though, Riseth reckoned the defender could remain in white and green, providing a boost to Lennon and Celtic. 

He said: “I think he will stay at Celtic for now. Every time I speak to him he tells me he loves Celtic, he loves the town and the last time I spoke to him he said, ‘Why would I want to leave Celtic?’”


Hoops targeting Fraser alternative

Fraser Forster returned to Celtic training this week with Lennon intent on keeping in Glasgow. 

However, he isn’t the only stopper on the Hoops’ wishlist with Nick Hammond taking a personal interest in AEK Athens goalkeeper Vassilis Barkas.

A report from Sdna claims that Celtic will rival Basel to sign him once the window opens in the coming months. 

Standing at 6 foot 5, Barkas is quite the figure between the net and has an impressive record to his boot in 2019/20.

For AEK, he’s played 26 times, keeping 13 clean sheets in the process. 

Barkas also has international experience on his hands, being capped ten times by his country Greece, so he’s clearly capable of playing at a fairly high level. 

No fee was mentioned in Sdna’s report but Transfermarkt value the goalkeeper at £2.1m – a bargain if Hammond and co ever saw one.


Premier League swoop on the cards

So often Celtic sell some of their best players to the Premier League – think Virgil Van Dijk and Kieran Tierney – but this time it’s the Hoops who could be doing the snatching.

After landing the likes of Jeremie Frimpong and Oliver Ntcham from Manchester City, they’re now targeting the red side of Manchester for some new talent.

A report from France Football suggests the Bhoys are in a three-horse race to sign Aliou Traore from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side.

Old Firm rivals Rangers and Benfica are in the hunt to sign the 19-year-old midfielder who has previously earned comparisons to World Cup winner Paul Pogba. 

Traore has played 14 times in Premier League 2 this season, scoring four goals in the process.

He’s described as a powerful box-to-box midfielder with the ability to beat a man and attack with great technical ability.

It’s not understood just how much Celtic would have to pay in order to prise him away from Old Trafford.

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