Celtic will reportedly have to break the bank in order to sign Bournemouth striker Lys Mousset this summer.
According to the Scottish Daily Mail (5th June, page 75), Celtic will have to shatter the £9m fee they splashed out on Odsonne Edouard last summer (Sky Sports). Mousset is also a France under-21 international, but he’s also only scored two goals this season.
He’s made 28 appearances overall, but has scored just one Premier League goal and one EFL Cup goal during the last campaign. For a goal return, it’s hardly something to break our transfer record for.
In total since signing for Bournemouth back in 2017, Mousset has scored five goals and assisted just one. His previous spell at Le Havre back in France saw him secure a more respectable 14 goals and three assists in 34 appearances.
The step up to the Premier League seems to have been a tad much for him. Celtic, therefore, could have to decide whether his all-round game is worth splashing cash on.
To be fair to Mousset, his goal return in France suggests he can be effective at a lower level than England’s top tier has to offer. But his goals back home also came in Ligue 2, not the top flight.
Is this all truly necessary?
The Scottish Daily Mail believe in the same report that Mousset is Celtic’s number one target to strengthen going forward. He has netted on five occasions for the France under-21 side in eight matches, so that’s a bit of a better return.
If Celtic could get Mousset for a much cheaper sum than £9m, then fair enough. But if they have to go over and above and spend huge money? It feels like a risk we could get away without taking. That money would be much better spent on a high-quality right-back, centre-back, or both.
Edouard will be the number one striker next season as it stands. If Neil Lennon was to bring Mousset in to rival him, it wouldn’t be the best sign of confidence in Leigh Griffiths. Griff is a proven goalscorer, and whilst his all-round game is hardly the greatest, he’s netted 104 times for the club. He can be Edouard’s deputy.
Failure in the Premier League doesn’t necessarily mean Mousset wouldn’t be a success here of course. If Celtic do go for him and have to spend big, then fair enough, we can’t argue with the club showing some ambition and getting the men they want in the door.
But the forward line isn’t the biggest priority at the moment. Ideally, the back-line could do with reinforcements before as much as over £9m is spent on an additional striker.
It’ll be interesting to see if this puts Celtic off should the report be true. If it is, this seems to be one we would be best avoiding.