Why now is the right time for Celtic to reignite interest in Aaron Mooy

By David Walton

June 15, 2022

Last year, the Celtic supporters watched on as the club was constantly linked with a move for Shanghai Port midfielder Aaron Mooy.

After the appointment of Ange Postecoglou, Australian international Mooy was mooted as a potential midfield option for Ange. There was said to be talk in Shanghai about Celtic potentially making an approach. It was then claimed that the manager had asked the club to go out and secure the player over the summer [90Min].

It made sense too given Mooy had previously outlined how much he enjoyed working under the now Celtic boss during his days as the Australia manager [FourFourTwo]. That appreciation appeared to be mutual.

Photo by Daniel Kalisz/Getty Images

Not long after all of that, it was then claimed in November 2021 that Ange had targeted Mooy as his number 1 signing in January despite earning £60k-per-week in China [Daily Mail]. However, once again it didn’t happen.

Now, Celtic find themselves in a situation where they’re in need of another midfielder. Ange has made that perfectly clear after the departures of Nir Bitton and Tom Rogic respectively. Mooy would give the manager some much-needed experience in a more defensive-midfield role and potentially allow Callum McGregor to operate a touch higher up.

He likely wouldn’t cost a massive fee given he’s into the final year of his contract in China this summer. Not to mention the fact that interest likely wouldn’t be too high given he hasn’t been playing regular football since January. Celtic shouldn’t expect too much competition if they decided to make a move.

Aaron Mooy into the final year of his deal in China

Mooy has actually been staying in Scotland instead of returning to China to prepare for the delayed start to the Super League season. This was so that he didn’t get stuck in quarantine due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

And it’s evident his 4-month absence from the game hasn’t hindered him either. He put in a starring display for Australia against Peru to help them reach Qatar 2022 on Monday night [FTBL]. There’s no reason to believe his quality has dropped just because he’s been out of action.

Ange has lost a power of experience with Bitton’s departure and Celtic now lack a ball-winning defensive-minded midfielder. Even though Mooy enjoys getting forward in a box-to-box role at times, he has plenty of experience in playing a touch deeper and providing some aggression.

Photo by Speed Media/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

This is the kind of move Ange would surely been keen on doing if possible. Granted, the question mark has still to be asked about wages. A move to Celtic Park would certainly see a big reduction on what he’s currently on.

But it’s all lining up to be a good opportunity for Celtic if the question is to be asked. With a CV that boasts international, EPL, and even Scottish Premiership experience in the past – the time is right to be exploring this once again.

As of yet, however, there have been no reports of any concrete interest.

In other news, Report: Former Celtic winger wants Scottish football return after 12 years away