Celtic managed to win yet another domestic trophy, albeit their overall performance in the final left a lot to be desired. One performance though will go into the folklore of the club, and that was of Fraser Forster. The English goalkeeper almost single-handedly bailed out the Hoops. It wouldn’t have been wrong if his name was etched on the trophy instead of Celtic’s.
With Forster coming up with performances like that, it is fair to say that the fans and team management would want to see him join permanently next summer after his loan deal expires. However, Neil Lennon once again dropped a warning that the club needs to be realistic about this signing and they cannot afford to go overboard.
Lennon explains Forster’s situation
The former Hibernian manager said (Daily Record), ”It’s about affordability. That’s something we can talk about. I’ll talk to the player, but first, we have to make the call to Southampton, and I’ll need to speak to Peter (Lawwell) about that. Is it beyond us? I don’t know. Would I love to do it? Of course, but we have to be realistic at times, and we can’t go overboard either. We have to be prudent, but we have him right now, and it’s fantastic because he’s definitely made us better.”
It is believed that the Forster earns £70,000 a week and that is going to be a stumbling block for the Hoops. Given the love and adulation which the 31-year-old receives at Parkhead, it wouldn’t be surprising to see him take a pay cut to move to the Parkhead. However, Southampton could demand a massive fee for him, especially now that he has been doing miracles for the Bhoys.
Forster recent performances will also bring him in contention to play for England again. At the St. Mary’s, he had become the third-choice goalkeeper behind Alex McCarthy and Angus Gunn. Forster had to train with the u-23 side often, and it has been a win-win situation for everyone ever since his arrival at Parkhead.
How much should Celtic look to pay?
Celtic should look to pay around £8-10m, but beyond that, it could be a bit too much for the Hoops. Hence, things now rest in Southampton’s hands. Southampton’s future could also dictate Forster’s fortunes as the Saints are fighting for survival in the Premier League.
If they go down a division, maybe Forster might once again come in contention to start for them, or perhaps the club might be forced to sell him on a cut-price deal before going down to the Championship. Therefore a lot of ifs and buts are involved at the moment, and a clearer picture will only emerge in the next summer.
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