Celtic have reportedly made a £3million bid for Manchester City attacker Patrick Roberts, according to a report in TEAMtalk.
The 23-year-old joined Celtic on loan in January 2016 and proved a hit during his two-and-a-half-season stint on Parkhead, helping the Hoops win three Scottish Premierships, two League Cups and two Scottish Cups.
Roberts became a favourite among the Bhoys thanks to his impressive performances and tally of 18 goals and 26 assists in 78 appearances, and following a disappointing spell with Girona, it was hoped that he could join the Glasgow giants once again last summer.
It wasn’t to be as he penned a new Man City contract before heading out on loan to Premier League newcomers Norwich City, but his stint at Carrow Road was cut short due to lack of game time, and he ended up dropping down a tier as he linked up with Middlesbrough.
According to the TEAMtalk report, Man City have turned down the £3million bid as they aren’t prepared to offload him just yet, but the offers remains on the table.
Two Celtic icons previously expressed their desire to see Roberts join the Hoops permanently.
Davie Hay told the Glasgow Evening Times last year: “One man that certainly could and probably should be a consideration for Celtic this summer is Patrick Roberts.
“The winger hasn’t really hit the heights we all know that he is capable of in Girona on loan from Manchester City this season, but he did exceptionally well at Celtic in his spell up in Scotland and he is still young at 22.
“I think that (Roberts and James Forrest) could play in the same team and maybe switch flanks. With Scott Sinclair’s future looking uncertain, he is one who would be almost certain to have an impact.”
John Hartson, meanwhile, wrote on Twitter in June 2017:
Love to see Celtic sign him permanently. https://t.co/O65xn08nN9
— John Hartson (@JohnHartson10) June 5, 2017
Roberts is a high-calibre player who was a smash hit at Celtic, but £3million would constitute a major loss for Man City, who paid Fulham a reported £12million for his services in 2015.
Likewise, given the reigning Premier League champions gave him a deal until 2022 with the option of a further year, they clearly have high hopes for him.
Just because his spells at Girona and Norwich didn’t go to plan, that doesn’t mean the player has suddenly become bad, and surely he can turn his career around and potentially become profitable for Man City in the future.
That said, there’s no reason why another loan spell at Celtic couldn’t be on the cards next season – and given how many plaudits he got last time, he’d be a boost in their hopes of keeping their Glasgow rivals at bay once again.