Report: Atlanta United new frontrunners for Giorgos Giakoumakis as Celtic exit edges closer

By Lewis Laird

January 25, 2023

Giorgos Giakoumakis could be edging closer to his Celtic exit, with reports suggesting that MLS side Atalanta United are the current frontrunners.

The 28-year-old has been heavily linked with a move away from Parkhead throughout January after failed talks regarding a new contract.

J-League side Urawa Red Diamonds appeared to initially be leading the race to sign the Celtic number seven after reportedly agreeing a fee with the Hoops.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

However, according to a report from 90min, Atlanta United are now the frontrunners to sign the Celtic star after edging out Urawa.

The report also goes on to mention that a deal to bring Giakoumakis to the US could be imminent, with all parties looking to finalise the details.

The Greek international would act as the replacement for recently departed Atalanta frontman Josef Martinez, who joined Inter Miami last weekend.

And he could also join as one of three ‘Designated Players’ at the MLS side, with United currently occupying just two of their three allotted slots.

The Designated Player role allows clubs in the Major League Soccer to acquire players ‘whose total compensation and acquisition exceed the Maximum Salary Budget Charge’ [MLS].

So with the final details now looking to be sorted between the player and his potential new club, a deal appears as though it could be edging closer, which would see Giakoumakis depart the Hoops.

Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images

Thankfully for Ange Postecoglou, he now has a replacement in the door after the club completed the signing of South Korean striker Hyeongyu Oh earlier today.

It remains to be seen how true these new reports from 90min are. But it seems likely we will see last season’s Scottish Premiership top goalscorer leave Parkhead over the next seven days.

It is a shame that his stay in Glasgow will be coming to an end after just 18 months. It would be fair to say the striker had an extremely successful 2022.

But Ange Postecoglou has previously spoken about being ruthless in the transfer market. And this appears to be the perfect example of the next step in Celtic’s evolution under the 57-year-old.

We will have to wait for more updates for confirmation in the coming days.

In other news, Celtic transfer business may not be over; Ange Postecoglou’s recent history tells an encouraging tale.