Hatayspor manager approves summer exit for Celtic-linked Aaron Boupendza

By David Walton

July 26, 2021

Hatayspor manager Omer Erdogan has approved a potential summer exit for reported Celtic target Aaron Boupendza.

Speculation has surrounded the future of Boupendza stretching back to March. Celtic were initially linked with a move for the Gabon international along with a host of EPL clubs [90Min].

Since then, the transfer rumours haven’t stopped being blasted out in Turkey. Celtic have been linked in recent months with an offer [Milliyet], however that’s yet to be firmed up with any further updates.

Celtic could still be in the market for another centre-forward this summer. Odsonne Edouard is still at the club, but it seems the natural time for him to depart given he’s into the final year of his contract.

And Erdogan has confirmed that Hatayspor is still in talks with clubs in Turkey and in Europe.

As quoted by Turkish outlet Sporx, Erdogan said: “Aaron Boupendza has been on the transfer agenda for months. There are clubs interested both domestically and abroad. European clubs work very professionally. I don’t want to give a name, but the coaches of some clubs called me and got information about Boupendza.

“Clubs also asked for information about training performances and character. Our president has already made a statement. An offer that will please us, if it comes, we will then sell Boupendza. If no good offer comes, we will continue.

“Boupendza gave a good performance (last season). The player also has goals. Considering both the club and the player, I approve this transfer.”

Celtic-linked Aaron Boupendza still on the market

Celtic don’t look like making a move for another centre-forward until Edouard is gone. That much appears clear given the club has already recruited Kyogo Furuhashi.

Whilst Boupendza did finish as Turkish football’s top scorer last season with 22 goals, that comes at a cost. In the past, he’s been reported as being valued at £8.5m [90Min].

Celtic simply can’t justify spending that amount on a striker just now. Not unless we rake in big money for Edouard at some stage this summer. Granted, that looks more likely than not.

Photo by Burak Milli/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Of course, this can’t be totally ruled out. Not with Hatayspor clearly in contact with clubs in Europe. Given our current situation, one of those could easily be Celtic. That figure, regardless of whether we sell Eddy or not, would have to come down, however.

When it comes to priority recruits, three positions will be screaming out at Celtic fans. The right-back, left-back, and left-wing position should be our main goals. Potentially a new goalkeeper too given the situation we have between Vasilis Barkas and Scott Bain.

A move for Boupendza is extremely attractive and has been all summer. And with the player still on the market after a failed move to Fenerbahce, this is still an option if we need one more centre-forward in.

In other news: 3 big questions facing Ange Postecoglou ahead of Celtic vs Midtjylland