Saints Could Raid Celtic Again !
Monday, 11th Jun 2018 09:36
Saints could be about to shop in Glasgow again after Celtic deciding to cut their losses and run on a player that Saints tried to sign last summer.
A year ago Saints were chasing Celtic's Stuart Armstrong but were rebuffed by the Scottish club in a scenario that could draw parallels with the Virgil Van Dijk situation also happening at the same time on the South Coast.
Certainly Saints seem to have shopped at Celtic Park as often as Liverpool have presented their credit card at the St Mary's checkouts in recent years.
Armstrong was highly rated last summer and attracted interest from several Premier League clubs including Saints who were said to be favourites to sign him, but as Saints did with Virgil Van Dijk , Celtic stood firm and hoped the player would accept the situation.
In 2016/17 Armstrong scored 15 SPL goals for the Hoops in only 31 games, but this year he did not have anywhere near as much impact leading to accusations that his heart wasn't as in it as much as it had been, he appeared in 24 Scottish Premier League games, but only a little over half of them were in the starting line up and he scored only 3 times.
Now with only a year of his contract left Celtic are ready to listen to offers for the player rather than lose him on a free transfer in a year's time.
Armstrong is predominantly a central midfielder which suggests that Saints are ready to ship a player or two out of their own options in that area.
The question will be what his cost will be, according to transfermakt his value is only around £2 million but Celtic will be looking for much more than that for a player whom the same data site ranks 349th in Europe for central midfielders.
Suggestions are that Saints will face competition from both Crystal Palace & Brighton and the bidding will start at around the £5 million mark, but how much higher anyone will be willing to go will soon be found out.
At 26 Armstrong is approaching the peak of his career and fits the bill for players whom Saints like to sign, but although Saints have raided Celtic before with varying success, there is a massive gulf in the standard between the English and Scottish Premier League's and it would be a gamble unless it was truly a bargain price.
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