Everton are reportedly willing to let go of midfielder James McCarthy this summer and it is believed Steve Bruce wants to lure the Irishman to Newcastle for just £5million – and that has got to entice Celtic.
The Sun claim 28-year-old McCarthy is a target for Newcastle at just £5million. Everton are now set to complete the signing of Jean Philippe Gbamin from Mainz for a fee of £25million, pushing McCarthy further down the order.
Marco Silva had already signed Andre Gomes on a permanent basis from Barcelona as well as Fabian Delph from Manchester City, leaving McCarthy with very little chance of breaking back into the first team.
Newcastle have let Mo Diame leave the club on a free transfer, while Ki Sung-yueng struggled last season so it is of no surprise to see a player such as McCarthy linked with a move to Tyneside. But Celtic should consider him, too.
According to The Mirror (print edition, page 66, Sunday, January 13, 2019), Celtic were interested in McCarthy at the start of the year – but he remained at Goodison Park. With less than a week left in the window, a move is needed.
Celtic do have options in the middle of the park but Neil Lennon has not been particularly impressed with the attitude of Olivier Ntcham. Kouassi Eboue could leave the club this summer, being linked with Panathinaikos.
McCarthy has experience of the Scottish Premiership, turning out 99 times for Hamilton – 37 of which came in the top flight. A Scotland return could be tempting, with 12 months left on his £50k-a-week deal (Spotrac).
Adding McCarthy to Celtic’s ranks in the middle of park would certainly be the most eye-catching capture of the season, eclipsing any of Rangers’ incomings. He could be the difference between a Rangers title and nine in a row.