Why Kilmarnock’s Greg Taylor could be a real coup for Celtic
According to Daily Express, Celtic have set their sights on Kilmarnock starlet Greg Taylor in a bid to find an ideal alternative to Kieran Tierney, with the report suggesting that the Hoops are planning to table an official bid for the 21-year-old in the next 48 hours.
Celtic are currently short of cover at left-back following the departure of Kieran Tierney to Arsenal for a fee of £25 million earlier in the summer, a record transfer fee for a Scottish international.
Manager Neil Lennon has shown plenty of confidence in new signing Boli Bolingoli-Mbombo in the opening stages of the campaign but the Belgian, although quite bright and exciting in the attacking third, has looked somewhat of a suspect defensively.
Celtic have already spent heavily to rebuild their defensive unit following the departure of last season’s mainstays Filip Benkovic, Dedryck Boyata, Emilio Izaguirre and Mikael Lustig, with the Hoops bringing in the likes of Christopher Jullien, Hatem Abd Elhamed and Bolingoli-Mbombo to plug the gaps at the back.
However, the departure of Tierney might as well prove to be an unfathomable loss to the reigning Scottish champions if they don’t manage to bring in adequate cover at left-back before the end of the European transfer window at the start of the next month.
Celtic, indeed, have plenty of cash in the bank following the lucrative sale of Tierney and it remains to be seen how the ‘treble treble’ winners cope with the loss of their star academy talent.
Interestingly, as the story goes, Lennon seems convinced that Celtic do not need to look any further beyond Kilmarnock’s Greg Taylor in their attempts to replace the Scottish international.
Taylor, 21, is regarded as a top homegrown talent in Scotland with the potential to reach great heights in the days to come and the Hoops are keen to nab the starlet from Rugby Park.
The Daily Express suggests that Kilmarnock have quoted a price tag of £3 million to part ways with one of their top academy talents, although Celtic are hopeful of securing a deal for a fee lower than that.
However, the Hoops might have to pay over the odds to secure the services of the burgeoning talent, with the 21-year-old under contract at Rugby Park until the summer of 2021.
Taylor, who made his first-team debut for Kilmarnock in the 2015-16 campaign, has established himself as one of the mainstays of his club’s backline over the past few years, amassing a goal and 10 assists in 131 appearances in all competitions.
The left-back’s meteoric rise in Scottish football and his stellar run of form at Rugby Park earned him his first senior international cap against Belgium in June earlier in the year.
Taylor has only been capped once at the senior level by Scotland, although that could have been more had it not been for the presence of Liverpool star Andy Robertson and Tierney in the international ranks.
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All in all, Greg Taylor looks like a fine young talent and a future star in the making. Keeping that in mind, Celtic should not hesitate to go all out in their pursuit of the 21-year-old, even if they have to pay over the odds to land his signature.