Charlie Nicholas doesn't expect Celtic to sign Shankland in January

By John Reid

January 21, 2020

One player who has been linked with a move to Celtic recently is prolific Dundee United striker Lawrence Shankland.

The forward, who has scored 25 goals for the Championship side this season, was recently watched by Celtic’s Head of Football Operations Nick Hammond in Dundee United’s recent 4-1 win over Partick Thistle.

Incidentally, a game that Shankland scored a hat-trick in.

Hoops scout reportedly watched player

Celtic linked attacker Lawrence Shankland (Photo by DIMITAR DILKOFF/AFP via Getty Images)

Even more recently, the Scottish Sun reported that Celtic scout Tosh McKinlay watched Shankland score in Sunday’s Dundee United vs Hibernian game.

However, one man who doesn’t think that Shankland will be joining the Hoops in the immediate future is Sky Sports pundit Charlie Nicholas.

Nicholas, writing in his column in the print edition of the Scottish Daily Express (21/1, Page 55), believes any move that Celtic make for the player will come in the summer.

His reasoning for that – the money that Dundee United will want for Shankland.

“I am not sure”

(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

“Will Rangers or Celtic bite? I am not sure they will pay the money in this window. There is more chance of a deal like that happening in the summer. The problem is going to be Dundee United’s valuation. They have already said they don’t want to sell the Scotland cap and it is going to take a big bid to get him out.”

As well as Dundee United wanting a hefty fee for Shankland, there is another aspect that has to be taken into account.

At this moment in time, Celtic do not need to sign another striker. The Hoops already have four strikers in the first-team squad.

That could change before the end of the transfer window. As it stands though, there is no need for Celtic to have a fifth striker in the first-team squad.

That is why Nicholas is probably correct in his comments. Dundee United will not want to sell the player whilst they have not yet won the Championship, and there is no real need for Celtic to move for the player at the moment.