Celtic could ‘resurrect’ their interest in signing Schalke 04 defender Malick Thiaw this summer, according to journalist Pete O’Rourke.
The Lowdown: Previous links
In June, Italian outlet Calciomercato reported that the Hoops were ‘in talks’ with the 20-year-old ahead over a potential move to Parkhead. At the same time, Serie A giants AC Milan were also said to be in the running for the German’s signature.
Christopher Jullien was close to moving in the opposite direction after falling down the pecking order under Ange Postecoglou. However, the Frenchman’s proposed move to Schalke collapsed at the last minute, with the Bundesliga side instead opting to sign former Southampton centre-back Maya Yoshida.
The Latest: O’Rourke’s claim
With six centre-backs now at the club, Schalke sporting director Rouven Schröder spoke about potential departures from Gelsenkirchen, saying: “I think Malick suits us very well in the Bundesliga, but we have always said that we deal with offers that come in. If the overall theme fits, we will also think about it.”
With Schalke believed to be demanding £8.5m for the youngster, O’Rourke believes that Thiaw could still be of interest to Celtic.
Speaking with GiveMeSport, the journalist claimed: “He was a target earlier this summer when Celtic were looking for central defensive reinforcements. They’ve obviously brought in (Moritz) Jenz from France on loan, so maybe that lead is now not required to bring in a new centre-back.
“But I’m sure Celtic will be monitoring the situation, and if players were to leave the club or something opened up, that might be a move they might try and resurrect for Malick Thiaw.”
Do Celtic need more signings?
Yes, get more in!
No, perfect business done
The Verdict: Great potential
The Hoops have brought in Moritz Jenz from Lorient on a temporary basis to compete with Cameron Carter-Vickers, Carl Starfelt, Stephen Welsh and Christopher Jullien for a spot in the Premiership champions’ starting XI.
However, with Jullien expected to depart the club, this could open up a spot for the youngster, who is deemed to have ‘great potential’ by his former manager Christian Gross.
During the 2021/22 season in the German second tier, Thiaw averaged 2.6 tackles, 1.7 interceptions and 3.4 clearances per game (via WhoScored). In last season’s Premiership, no Celtic player made more interceptions, while only one had a better tackling average (via WhoScored), so the youngster could certainly enhance the Hoops’ defence if he comes to Glasgow.
Having added a big presence to Schalke’s back-line, the 20-year-old would thus be considered a fantastic propspective coup for Celtic’s long-term future.
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