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Transfer Scenario: Celtic and Scott Sinclair

This article forms part of our Transfer Scenario feature, which is where Football Transfer Tavern takes a look at a recent transfer rumour and suggests what the potential consequences would be, should a deal be completed.

Celtic winger Scott Sinclair has reportedly attracted interest from Derby for a potential move back to England, according to Football Insider.

The 30-year-old has been largely frozen out by Neil Lennon at Parkhead this season, having made just six appearances since the start of July – all as a substitute – and none in the last two months. [via TransferMarkt]

Sinclair, who hasn’t even made the matchday squad for the Hoops’ last three Premiership games, has apparently told friends that he is seeking a new challenge elsewhere after falling out of favour at Celtic, as reported by Football Insider.

If the English winger was to make the move to Derby or elsewhere, how could it affect Celtic? We look at a few of the potential consequences for the Hoops should Sinclair leave.

Timing of the move

General view outside the stadium before the Celtic v RB Leipzig Europa League - Group Stage - Group B match, 2018

If Celtic are to let Sinclair leave, it would be in their best interests to do so in January, as his current contract expires at the end of the season.

He is valued at £3.6m by TransferMarkt and that would not be an inconsiderable fee for Celtic to reap, with only 14 players being sold for larger amounts in the club’s history, and certainly seems a preferable alternative to letting him run down his contract and departing for nothing in the summer.

Loss of a proven goalscorer

Even though the 30-year-old has barely featured this season, he still managed to score twice in the 86 minutes in which he has played in 2019/20.

He scored 60 goals in his previous three seasons at Celtic (17 last term, 18 in 2017/18, 25 the previous year), which despite declining from one year to the next is still a consistently strong goal return from a wide player.

Sinclair’s record at the Hoops is 62 goals in 166 appearances, which works out at one goal every 2.68 games, so Lennon must surely realise that the Englishman is a dependable scorer.

The importance of getting Mohamed Elyounoussi’s future sorted

Sinclair’s position on the left-wing has been supplanted by Mohamed Elyounoussi for most of this season, with the Norwegian making a big impact upon his loan arrival from Southampton in late August.

The 25-year-old has scored seven goals in 12 appearances for Celtic, which has led to calls from a number of Hoops fans to sign him permanently.

The presence of Elyounoussi at Parkhead would lessen the impact of Sinclair departing, but Celtic would have to break their transfer record to secure him on a permanent deal, with Football Insider reporting that Southampton want at least £10m if he is to be sold outright.

A chance for Mikey Johnston to re-establish himself

Prior to Elyounoussi’s arrival, Mikey Johnston began the season as Lennon’s preferred option on the left in several games.

A return of three goals and four assists from 10 matches hinted that the 20-year-old could have a big season, only for a thigh injury sustained in early September to keep him out of action ever since.

If Sinclair goes and Celtic are unable to keep Elyounoussi, the door could be open for Johnston to get back into the team and make the left winger’s position his own.

Can Celtic afford to let Sinclair leave or would it be in everyone’s best interest to let him go given his inability to get into the team of late? Tell us what you think by commenting below!


Transfer Scenario: Celtic and Scott Sinclair
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