Celtic may be about to turn their attention to Rosenborg’s Birger Meling as their left-back recruitment saga drags on to the end of the transfer window.
Neil Lennon has been looking for a replacement to Kieran Tierney since the 22-year-old moved to Arsenal at the start of the month. Many names have been mentioned including Norwegian Meling and Kilmarnock’s Greg Taylor.
A move for the latter could be dead in the water, if recent reports are to be believed. The Daily Record say that we’re not prepared to meet the £3million price being quoted for the young defender who has featured over 100 times for the Rugby Park club.
They reckon that Meling is now a viable option, especially after the club had him scouted against Dinamo Zagreb in Croatia last week. (Scottish Sun)
The Norwegian champions lost that clash 2-0 and will therefore need a big turnaround on Tuesday night if they’re to make the last 32 of the Champions League. Such a comeback would make it very difficult for Meling to depart Trondheim for Glasgow. He even said as much a fortnight ago.
“It is clear that if you make it to the Champions League, it will be terribly difficult to go away,” Meling admitted to Norwegian outlet VG on August 15th.
Celtic are playing a risky game with Meling
That means that Celtic are in the absolutely inexcusable position of relying on another match in a competition we’re no longer even in. Chances are that Rosenborg won’t pull back the deficit against Dinamo. But what if they do?
Meling will almost certainly not leave if he’s got Champions League football to look forward to. The Norwegian champions would also be less inclined to sell given the vast revenue that would be coming their way.
Will we then be forced to pay the going rate for Taylor? Will we amble through the remaining days of the window before eventually signing nobody?
That seems completely unthinkable, but is it really? We’ve heard the “we tried” excuse from board and management on a number of occasions over the past five years. Those same comments won’t wash as easily with Celtic fans this time around though.
We have signed one left-back already this summer but the truth is that we always needed two if Tierney was to depart. The fact that we are now days away from the close of the window and still haven’t sorted out our business is a joke. Not to mention totally inexcusable.