If Ismaila Soro rumours are true, Celtic ought to demand huge fee

By Euan Davidson

April 28, 2021

Last night, we shared a report that suggested Tottenham Hotspur were after Celtic star Ismaila Soro.

The Daily Mail claim that manager-less Spurs are “tracking” the Ivorian, who’s been a sensation in limited minutes this campaign.

It’s been a strange sort of year for Soro, who broke into the first-team ahead of Scott Brown in the winter. Yet, with Broony confirming his plans to leave the club, the defensive midfielder has been somewhat frozen out under John Kennedy. This is despite calls from supporters, who absolutely love the energetic midfield enforcer.

Soro has been one of few bright spots this season. His potential seems enormous, with excellent passing accuracy, ability in the tackle and stamina to turn defence into attack. A midfield “pivot”, if you like, Soro seems like the future of the Celtic midfield. That is, unless, an offer comes in that’s too good to refuse.

Because honestly, it would have to be. If Celtic were to pluck a talent from obscurity, attracting Premier League interest, it’d be an absolute crime not to get at least £15m for him in today’s market.

Celtic midfielder Ismaila Soro / (Photo by Alan Harvey/SNS Group via Getty Images)

Ismaila Soro could have immense value in the future

Players with the range of attributes Ismaila Soro has are rare as hen’s teeth. While we haven’t seen the full scope of the Ivorian’s abilities yet, we do know he’s tactically adaptable, and has the natural fitness to run the midfield. We also saw his presence in the midfield bringing the best out of Callum McGregor and David Turnbull, who had license to roam with Soro working away behind them.

Now, in terms of value: the last time Tottenham signed a promising, energetic defensive midfielder was in 2019. From Lyon, Tanguy Ndombele commanded a £53m fee [BBC]. Largely, his price was based on his performances in a strong league, and his potential – rightly – was deemed worthy of investment.

We’re not suggesting for a second that Soro will command nearly the same fee. But in that signing, Spurs showed their hand. This is a club with deep, deep pockets, and if we were to let a high-potential player go for a pittance, it’d represent chronic mismanagement, even if he’s only played 22 times for the club [Transfermarkt].

With a contract to run until 2024 [Transfermarkt], Celtic need to be canny if the reports are true. Accepting a low-ball offer would weaken all of our subsequent negotiating positions in the upcoming transfer window.

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