Celtic must be willing to break their transfer record this summer to land a ‘top-drawer’ striker.
That’s according to former Hoops midfielder Murdo MacLeod, speaking to The Sunday Post.
Celtic could be set to lose Odsonne Edouard this summer. The 82-goal Frenchman is about to enter the final year of his contract and, according to Football Insider, is intent upon leaving Parkhead regardless of who is appointed manager.
The Cameroonian is valued at £6.3m by Transfermarkt but could be the subject of a bidding war, with TEAMtalk reporting that Newcastle United, Southampton and West Ham United are all in the race for the 28-year-old.
Will Celtic receive £20m for Edouard?
MacLeod, who played for Celtic between 1978 and 1987, says that the club’s striker recruitment strategy has failed them up to this point.
He told The Sunday Post: “In the past seven or eight years Celtic brought in a number of strikers that cost around the £2m mark,” he said.
“One or two of them were very good but too many of them didn’t hold up.
“That’s why they need to get it right this summer and if that means breaking their transfer record then that’s what they have to do.
“But I know that is easier said than done. It’s up to the manager and his scouting staff to source someone out of the top drawer.”
It’s pretty alarming that four of Celtic’s top five record signings were recruited between 1999 and 2002 – Chris Sutton, John Hartson, Eyal Berkovic and Neil Lennon – and it would certainly be a welcome statement of intent if the club splashed out on an eight-figure centre-forward signing.
However, it’s not always about breaking the bank, and sometimes subtlety can be rewarded. Let’s not forget that Celtic picked up Moussa Dembele on a free transfer, and he went on to net 51 goals in 94 appearances.
If Edouard does move on, though, MacLeod is right in saying that the process of identifying his replacement will be critical, given the scoring burden they would be required to fill.
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