Celtic have made initial contact for the signing of Preston North End midfielder Ben Pearson, Sky Sports journalist Anthony Joseph has reported.

January has barely begun but already the Celtic transfer rumours have started.

Joseph, a Hoops fan who has had his fair share of scoops over the last 12 months, reports that Celtic are keen on landing the English Championship player on a pre-contract basis.

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His current contract at Deepdale is due to expire at the end of the season.

Pearson has been part of Preston’s furniture over the last few years. He’s made 165 appearances since joining the club from Manchester United in January 2016.


He’s one of the most effective defensive-minded midfielders in the second-tier. The former England youth international would add significant competition to the middle of the park in a post-Scott Brown world.

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Future Celtic planning

The Celtic captain is 35 now, and with his own contract expiring this summer, the stars appear to be aligned on an emotional retirement whatever happens this season.

Pearson fits the midfield terrier mould that will be needed should that happen.

England can be an over-inflated market for player value, but with Brexit hitting, Neil Lennon has already made it clear they may have to focus on players from the isles before looking abroad.

Bagging one of the most consistent performers in the Championship on a pre-contract would be a shrewd bit of business.

Celtic target Ben Pearson

Celtic target Ben Pearson / (Photo by Ben Early – AMA/Getty Images)

The Scottish champions are unlikely to be the only suitors for Pearson, in my opinion, given his profile and situation. There could be a few twists and turns before this one gets over the line.

We’ll have a more in-depth look at the midfielder on 67 Hail Hail in the coming days.

In other news, Ryan Christie thinks Ismaila Soro and David Turnbull are ready to play Rangers.

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