Celtic have not terminated the contract of Olivier Ntcham, contrary to reports suggesting that they would do so.
That’s according to Scott McDermott, the chief football writer at the Sunday Mail.
The midfielder joined Ligue 1 outfit Marseille on loan at the end of the winter transfer window, with the deal containing an option to buy for £4.5m. However, Ntcham found himself immediately engulfed in controversy after then-manager Andre Villas-Boas publicly stated that he had not approved the signing.
The 25-year-old went on to make just four league appearances before the end of the season, playing a grand total of 118 minutes (via Transfermarkt).
The Frenchman’s £15,000-per-week Celtic contract runs until June 2022, and Football Insider reported on Saturday that the Hoops had no intention of welcoming him back to the fold and decided to rip up his contract to allow him leave on a free transfer.
McDermott got in touch with the club for a response to the reports and he was told that, as it stands, Ntcham’s Parkhead contract remains in place.
In the early hours of Monday morning, he tweeted: “Despite online reports, as of this afternoon, Celtic say the contract of French midfielder Olivier Ntcham hasn’t been terminated…”
Even with a new manager set to come in at Parkhead, it would seem a surprise if Ntcham were to revive his career in Glasgow, considering how Celtic found him dispensable this season and given his glaring lack of match action in recent months.
Still, given that he’s valued at £3.15m by Transfermarkt, it makes sense to try to offload him this summer rather than simply letting him walk away for nothing next year. Even a small transfer fee could make a valuable contribution towards the club’s possible summer rebuild, so hopefully the reports of Celtic cancelling his contract are wide of the mark, as McDermott has suggested.
In other news, Alan Nixon answers Eddie Howe announcement question.
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