Reports from the Chronicle is stating that Newcastle United could listen to offers for their defender Ciaran Clark in January if long-term absentee Florian Lejeune is fit in time. We believe this development should be tracked by Celtic as they would be in need of a centre-half soon and the Magpies defender can be a decent bet for Brendan Rodgers.
The Toon added Federico Fernandez and Fabian Schar in the summer, and that has probably put Clark down the pecking order. Last season, captain Jamaal Lascelles and Florian Lejeune were outstanding in the second half of the season, and when Lejeune would be back from his injury, one can expect him to start regularly once again. In such a scenario, shipping away Clark seems like the right ploy from Benitez.
Celtic could soon be in need of a defender as the likes of Dedryck Boyata, and Filip Benkovic are likely to leave by next year. However, it is not clear whether that would happen in January or the summer. With Harry Maguire a constant target for Manchester United, Leicester City can very well call back Filip Benkovic early from his loan spell at Park Head.
29-year-old Clark is an Ireland international and his versatility to play in various positions at the back should come in handy for Rodgers. The defender has the experience of over 160 games in the English top flight, and with the Magpies putting him up for sale, Clark seems like a very attainable target for the Bhoys.
The defender might not be a long-term prospect given he is already 29, but we still believe he has it in him to perform well for the next 2-3 years at the very least. The Hoops struggled in the starting phase of the season as Boyata was unsettled after he made himself unavailable for selection and Benkovic was struggling with some minor injuries. However, in the past month, the duo have been rock solid, and the Hoops have the best defensive record in the league as they have shipped in just six goals so far.
When both were unavailable, Rodgers had to go in with the likes of Jack Hendry, Kristoffer Ajer and Jozo Simunovic. Barring Ajer, the other defenders clearly underperformed and were the reason behind some glaring errors which probably cost the Hoops a place in the Champions League this season. Even if the likes of Boyata and Benkovic stay on until the end of the season, Celtic shouldn’t let this opportunity pass by as Clark can be a perfect bet at Park Head and has all the elements which a top defender needs.
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