Report: Preston want more than £5m for Celtic target Ben Davies; reject Championship bid
Preston North End want more than £5m for the services of Celtic target Ben Davies during this transfer window, The Daily Record have reported this week.
They cite sources that believe Bournemouth have had a bid for that amount rejected by English Championship side.
The paper say Celtic have the player ‘under surveillance’ as they consider defensive options this month – particularly the situation of Kristoffer Ajer.
There have been reports the Norwegian international is seeking a move away from the Scottish champions (The Glasgow Times).
That could leave Neil Lennon in serious need of a capable replacement.
Davies is a left-sided central defender who has experience of playing at left-back.
That fits the bill as far as Ajer replacements are concerned, potentially providing depth on the flank where competition is needed for Greg Taylor too.
The Championship has been the highest level of competition he’s played regularly in, gaining over 100 appearances in the division.
He’s almost ever-present in the Preston team when fit which is a good sign – we need players who can perform consistently over the course of a long, draining season and the English second-tier is certainly that.
Still just 25, he’s also a defender entering his peak years.
Perhaps crucially though, Davies has less than 12 months left on his contract meaning that Celtic are free to speak to him on a pre-contract basis in just a few months time.
If Preston are playing hardball with his valuation, the negotiation team at the Bhoys might fancy their chances of waiting the situation out and grabbing him for nothing down the line.
I’d prefer us to pay the fee and get the players we want in the door but business realities could take over.
His situation is likely to be fluid and it’s pleasing that Celtic have their eye on the situation.