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After Scotland call-up should Celtic bring Dylan McGeouch back for third spell

The Hibernian midfielder has been in fine form this season.

Mathew Nash

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Alex McLeish’s first Scotland squad since returning to the national team role threw up a few surprises and first time call ups. Manchester United’s Scott McTominay was already known to be in the squad but he is joined by uncapped quintet Oli McBurnie, Barry Douglas, Jon McLaughlin, Scott McKenna and Dylan McGeouch. It is the latter that will be of particular interest to Celtic fans.

McGeouch has been in fine form under Neil Lennon at Hibernian this season. The 25-year-old has been running the show from midfield at Easter Road and catching the eye with his performances.

For Celtic, it is surely a regret to see him performing so well now. The midfielder spent eight years with Celtic, over two spells, as a youngster.

VIENNA, AUSTRIA – July 06: Thomas Schrammel of Rapid Wien (L) competes for the ball with Dylan McGeouch of Celtic Glasgow during the Pre Season Friendly between SK Rapid Wien and Celtic Glasgow at Gerhard-Hanappi-Stadium on July 6, 2014 in Vienna, Austria. (Photo by Christian Hofer/Getty Images)

After making his first-team debut in November 2011 McGeouch spent time on loan at Coventry City and Hibernian, eventually making the latter permanent. After initially struggling with injury at Hibs McGeouch has made himself a regular and one of the best performing midfielders in the Scottish Premiership.

So should Celtic consider bringing McGeouch back?

It would be the third time McGeouch signed for Celtic. He left the club as a youngster, joining local rivals Rangers, before returning in 2011.

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – APRIL 22: Dylan McGeouch of Hibernian celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal during the William Hill Scottish Cup semi-final match between Hibernian and Aberdeen at Hampden Park on April 22, 2017 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

McGeouch is out of contract in the summer. As reported by the Scotsman in January, the midfielder is in no rush to sign anything regarding the new three-year extension. His patience could pay off. Celtic will no doubt regret letting McGeouch go now – seeing how well he has performed since the permanent switch to Edinburgh.

But he will be available on a free transfer and for Celtic it is essentially a no risk transfer if they manage to pry McGeouch away from Hibs.

If they did, it could be a case of third time lucky for the 26-year-old at Celtic Park.

Sports journalist based in Bristol. Previously spent five years writing for HITC Sport. Everton fan for my sins.

Celtic

Despite poor World Cup Giorgian De Arrascaeta would be incredible Celtic signing

Celtic are being linked with a shock move for the Uruguayan.

Mathew Nash

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Celtic have been linked with a shock transfer move this week. According to reports, the Bhoys are keen on the signature of Uruguayan midfielder Giorgian De Arrascaeta.

The Sun initially reported that the 24-year-old would cost Celtic a fee in the region of £18 million. However, the Daily Record now suggests that asking price is inflated and Celtic will be able to afford the £10 million-plus asking price Cruzeiro have for the playmaker.

Of course, the talented La Celeste midfielder was with his nation at this summer’s World Cup. Uruguay made it to the quarter-finals of the competition, losing to eventual winners France.

But it was not a great personal performance from the player. He started the competition in the starting XI against Egypt. However, with Uruguay playing poorly and De Arrascaeta barely touching the ball, he was hauled off.

(Photo by Pedro Vilela/Getty Images)

He was subsequently dropped to the bench for the next four games of the competition, making a brief appearance against Russia in their group dead-rubber.

However, his poor form at the World Cup should not put Celtic off.

De Arrascaeta has been thriving in Brazil for a number of years and been tipped with a move to a host of top European clubs in recent years.

In fact, his difficult World Cup may have done Celtic a favour, with competition to sign him not as fierce as expected.

In Scottish football, he would be an absolute phenomenon. If Celtic can secure a transfer, then it would leave the rest of the nation trembling.

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Celtic

Celtic fans will be keeping an eye on £3m flop Teemu Pukki

The Finnish striker struggled during his spell at Celtic.

Mathew Nash

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Norwich City snapped up a new recruit this week with the arrival of Teemu Pukki from Brondby on a free transfer. The 28-year-old arrives on a three-year deal and the Championship club will be hoping he can find the form he did in Denmark. He scored 25 goals in 36 games for the Danish side last season and the Canaries will hope he can take them to the next level in front of goal.

For Celtic fans, his turn of form and recent deal are something of a surprise.

The Bhoys snapped up Pukki from Schalke 04 in the summer of 2013 after he had struggled to shine in German football. The deal cost a reported £3 million and he was expected to be a hit. He was signed as a replacement for Gary Hooper, who had ironically headed to Norwich.

(Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

On paper it looked a good deal but, for whatever reason, things did not work out for Pukki at Celtic.  He scored on his debut but soon enough the goals and his form left him. He managed just nine goals in 37 games for Celtic before joining Danish side Brondby, initially on loan, in 2014.

Pukki struggled to find the level necessary in Scotland but it would appear that his experience at Celtic has helped form him into a far better player.

Celtic fans are unlikely to wish he was still at Parkhead. When it comes to goals they are blessed with the talents of Odsonne Edouard, Moussa Dembele and Leigh Griffiths.

But no doubt Celtic fans will be keeping an eye on his progress in the Championship, as Pukki tries to crack the UK for the second time in his career.

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He is not worth £50m but Dedryck Boyata has proved a point this summer

Celtic’s Belgian defender has silenced many doubters this summer

Mathew Nash

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Earlier this week former Celtic hero John Hartson received some ridicule after suggesting the club’s central defender Dedryck Boyata might be worth £50 million. While that is not the case and the Welshman addressed so in the Glasgow Evening Times, he has proven a lot this summer.

Which is why it would have hurt that he found himself dropped to the bench for Belgium’s lucky escape against Japan last night. Vincent Kompany replaced him now fully fit and Boyata did little to deserve being demoted.

He was excellent in the group stages, especially the game with England. He had Marcus Rashford and Jamie Vardy under control throughout the game and proved himself worthy of transfer talk.

(Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Boyata also helped to prove something about Scottish football. The game north of the border gets a rough deal from some fans considering the standard of play and football.

But there are some incredible exceptions such as Virgil van Dijk or Andrew Robertson who can go on and achieve positive things away from Scotland.

If Celtic receive a handsome offer based on Boyata’s World Cup displays this summer then they will no doubt snap it up. The Belgian has now done all he can to prove he can cut it away from Parkhead.

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