Celtic supporters in the Transfer Tavern have been drowning the sorrows in recent times after seeing their side fail to qualify for the group stages of the Champions League after losing 3-2 on aggregate to AEK Athens in the third qualifying round.
Brendan Rodgers’ men had made routine progress through the opening two rounds in easing past both Alashkert and Rosenborg, yet a 1-1 draw at Parkhead last week against the Greek side left the Bhoys with work to do in the country’s capital on Tuesday. And the Scottish giants were unable to get the job done in going down 2-1 on the night to thus lose 3-2 on aggregate, leaving Rodgers’ side facing the prospect of a play-off round for the Europa League later this month.
Thus, there have been many despondent Celtic fans up and down the country in recent times, with many in particular irritated at defender Dedryck Boyata, as reports suggest that the centre back is refusing to play for the club – Rodgers confirmed after the AEK Athens match that he was fit to play.
And with the Bhoys facing something of a centre back crisis as a result, the ex-Liverpool chief may seek to solve those woes by moving for £1.8 million-rated free agent Nedum Onuoha (as per Transfermarkt).
Ultimately, the situation surrounding Boyata and his future has come at exactly the wrong time for the Scottish heavyweights, with injuries as well to Marvin Compper forcing Rodgers to partner Jack Hendry with right back Mikael Lustig on Tuesday night.
Thus, it’s clear that the Bhoys are struggling in that department and may well be in the market for someone to come in and provide some respite, even if only for the short term – Onuoha could be that man.
The 31-year-old is without a club after leaving Queens Park Rangers at the expiration of his contract earlier in the summer, thus bringing the curtain down on a six-year spell in West London, in which time the defender appeared 224 times for the Hoops, three of his seven seasons of which coming in the Premier League.
And with over 180 appearances in the English top-flight, as well as 145 in the Championship, the former England Under-21 international is vastly experienced and would thus add a great deal of both quality and indeed know-how to the Bhoys backline.
Add in his ability to play as a right back, and indeed occasionally on the opposite flank, and Onuoha’s arrival wouldn’t just strengthen the centre back department, but it’d also add further depth to the defence as a whole.
Thus, with Celtic struggling in the heart of their backline at present, Rodgers must seek to solve those centre back woes with a move for free agent Onouha.
Celtic fans… what do you think? Let us know!