Politics

Celtic transfer news as Ko Itakura option re-emerges and Ola Solbakken winks at Bodo Glimt exit



It won’t be as hectic a summer at Celtic as it was a year ago but plenty of comings and goings are expected as Ange Postecoglou gears up for a crack at the Champions League.

It’s difficult to strengthen a team who went undefeated in 31 domestic games to round off the season but a poor European campaign last season highlights some room for improvement.

Some depth is required and one option that may have re-emerged is that of Manchester City defender Ko Itakura.

Record Sport reported Celtic ‘s interest last summer before he opted to join Schalke on loan instead.

The versatile defender helped them win the Bundesliga 2 and it appeared he’d found a new home, announcing in February that he wanted to stay at Schalke long term.

However Sky in Germany say his current club are hesitating over paying the €5.5m (£4.5m) release clause – and a host of Bundesliga clubs are poised to take advantage.

Celtic could also move and Itakura provides a similar option to the departing Nir Bitton, capable of playing at centre-back or at defensive midfield.

We know Daizen Maeda will be a Celtic player permanently after Yokohama F. Marinos officially announced his departure and it looks as if Cameron Carter-Vickers will be joining him.

The Hoops have a £6m option to buy and Record Sport exclusively revealed on Monday night he has agreed personal terms on a Parkhead return.

As part of his loan agreement, Celtic now have until June 15 to get the deal rubber-stamped before other clubs can test Tottenham’s resolve.

Meanwhile previous reports claimed Postecoglou had identified Bodo/Glimt winger Ola Solbakken as a potential alternative to Jota.

Signing the Portuguese permanently remains one of Celtic’s top priorities and it continues to look likely that deal will come off as reports in his homeland suggest it is just a matter of time.

And maybe just as well as plan B Solbakken appears to be on the brink of joining Roma.

He’s keeping schtum on those rumours for now as he focuses on Bodo’s title defence and qualification for the Champions League – but did admit his admiration for Jose Mourinho.

“Roma want me? It’s good to hear about this interest, it’s fun, but apart from that I have no other comments to make,” he said.

“In any case it makes no sense for me to know anything now that the market window is closed.

“Now I concentrate on Bodo/Glimt. Mourinho? He is a great coach, I cannot deny that. He has won many important titles.”





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