Why Celtic should offer Callum McGregor a new deal to ward off interests
According to The Herald, Celtic are considering a new contract for star midfielder Callum McGregor after the Hoops rejected a bid from Leicester City for the 26-year-old’s services before the deadline in August.
McGregor was the subject of interest from the Foxes earlier in the summer, with Brendan Rodgers keen to bring his former Celtic player to the King Power Stadium.
The Hoops, though, were adamant that McGregor was not for sale in the summer, given his status as one of the most highly-rated players at the Parkhead.
Despite Leicester putting a handsome ransom on the table for the midfielder, the reigning Scottish champions chose not to alter their stance on the player, especially after pocketing £25 million from the sale of left-back Kieran Tierney to Arsenal. (h/t Herald)
Now, as the story goes, Celtic are keen to offer McGregor a new deal with improved terms in a bid to reassure him that he is one of the most important players at the club and an indispensable component of manager Neil Lennon’s plans moving forward.
The 26-year-old still has plenty of years remaining on his current deal, having only signed a new five-year contract with the Hoops back in December 2018 until the summer of 2023.
Celtic, however, are apparently desperate to secure McGregor’s future beyond that, with a new and improved deal understood to be in the offing.
To put things into perspective, Celtic do not need to panic over the 26-year-old’s contract situation at Parkhead currently but it should be a no-brainer for them to iron out a new deal for their star midfielder at some point before the start of the next campaign.
McGregor, who rose through the youth ranks at Celtic before bursting onto the first-team picture in the 2014-15 season, has established himself as one of the most influential midfielders north of the border in Scotland and his consistent run of form hasn’t eluded the eyes of the Premier League clubs.
The 14-ap Scottish international has amassed a staggering 39 goals and 47 assists in 236 appearances for Celtic in all competitions till date, with his presence in the middle of the park instrumental in guiding the Hoops to their remarkable ‘treble treble’ feat.
Celtic were able to keep Leicester at bay this summer but the Hoops might find themselves under pressure once again in the near future if the Premier League clubs come calling for McGregor’s services with big-money offers.
To that end, Celtic need to ensure that the 26-year-old has as many years remaining on his contract as possible, which would put them in a strong negotiating position when the potential suitors threaten to nab him away from Parkhead.
The Hoops know exactly how to price clubs out of moves for their star players and also get the best value from the sale of their prized assets, meaning that a new deal for McGregor would make perfect sense.
Truth be told, Celtic shouldn’t be looking to cash in on McGregor anytime soon, especially after losing Tierney this summer, given that they would find it extremely difficult to bring in a like-for-like replacement who offers such a wide range of qualities, not to mention, a high level of footballing intelligence.
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McGregor has shown signs of outgrowing his humble surroundings at Parkhead and given that he is only going to get better with time, Celtic might as well offer him a new deal with better terms to convince him to stay put at his boyhood club.