Report: Celtic target Yan Couto set to join Braga on loan

By Euan Davidson

August 17, 2021

Celtic target, Brazilian right-back Yan Couto, is set to join Braga on loan, according to a report in the Herald.

Couto, who watched as Celtic beat Jablonec 3-0 last week, will join the Portuguese side pending a medical, according to the Herald. It follows a topsy-turvy week of transfer speculation, also involving Croatian international Josip Juranovic.

Couto was named the Segunda division’s right-back of the season, while on loan with Girona [Manchester Evening News]. The Brazilian youth international starred for his country at the Under-17s World Cup in 2019 [MCFC].

That led to interest from Barcelona and Bayern Munich, but Manchester City won the day [Manchester Evening News]. The full-back had been included in pre-season matches by Pep Guardiola, but the club seem keen to move Couto out on loan to hasten his development.

Unfortunately, according to the Herald, that won’t be at Celtic. Meanwhile, the Bhoys remain keen on Juranovic, of Legia Warsaw. Currently, Anthony Ralston remains first-choice right-back for Ange Postecoglou.

Celtic and Yan Couto deal off; now club need to act quickly

In a way, it’s a shame; Couto is a hotly-tipped young player, who could’ve really excited the Hoops faithful for the 21-22 season.

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However, if he’s not up for a move after taking in the atmosphere against Jablonec, then he never will be. That’s ok; Celtic isn’t for everyone, otherwise we’d have a squad of 73, as Postecoglou quipped last week.

Photo by Matt McNulty – Manchester City/Manchester City FC via Getty Images

After the speculation linking the club to Aurelio Buta fizzled out, and the George Baldock chat came to nothing, it’s become increasingly frustrating for supporters. The club has needed right-backs since Jeremie Frimpong left.

In fact, Frimpong’s future may have been further up the pitch, if he stayed at Celtic. With Hatem Abd Elhamed needing a move home, reinforcements in that position would’ve been necessary.

Ralston has provided capable cover, there’s no doubt of that. However, for Postecoglou’s system, and for squad depth, the Hoops really need to bring in a permanent solution to the right-back issue.

That won’t be Couto. Celtic’s strange luck with Brazilian players continues.

Read more: Who we think will line up against AZ Alkmaar tomorrow

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