Will Celtic’s Kieran Tierney emerge as a target for Europe’s top clubs?
With the summer transfer window set to close in a little over two weeks time, some of Europe’s top clubs are continuing to target players in a bid to improve their squads.
One player who has so far remained below the radar is Celtic’s precocious left-back Kieran Tierney, who, despite his tender age, has been a key performer in Brendan Rodgers’ outstanding side.
According to BBC Sport, Tierney’s former teammate Kris Commons believes that Europe’s top clubs will want to monitor the youngster’s Champions League form before considering a bid. Celtic will certainly hope that this is the case, with the 20-year old seen as an outstanding talent and a future captain of the club.
A matter of time? Why Tierney will be under scrutiny this season
The youngster, who played a prominent role as Celtic went unbeaten domestically last season, has started the new campaign in brilliant form and even scored a stunning, 40-yard screamer while playing as centre-back in a League Cup win against Kilmarnock.
He also performed with distinction as a 19-year old in the Champions League last season, matching Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling during a thrilling 3-3 draw at Celtic Park.
Despite this, Commons believes that Europe’s top clubs will wait a little longer before making a move for the defender. “I think they will be waiting to see how he is in these Champions League games,” said of his former team-mate, with Celtic set to play the first leg of their final play-off game against Astana tonight.
“If they are going to spend £10-30m on a player, they need to know he’s able to play against Ronaldo and Bale.”
While Tierney’s long-term future will depend in part on his performances in the Champions League, Commons is in no doubt that the full-back will skipper the club in the future if he remains at Celtic Park.
“He could be the captain of Celtic for the next 15 years if he stays”, said Commons, who watched as Tierney stood in for regular skipper Scott Brown in the 5-0 cup win against Kilmarnock.
While Commons believes that the defender lacks “the edge” to become captain at present, it is clear that the club shares his views on Tierney’s immense potential and future role at Celtic Park.
Can Celtic hang on to Tierney?
Manager Brendan Rodgers has been relatively open when discussing Tierney’s future, while he certainly believes that he will remain at Celtic Park for the foreseeable future. Speaking to the Express, Rodgers said: “I don’t get a sense from him other than he’s in a good place, in a happy place. He genuinely loves playing for the club.”
“Players love football but they don’t necessarily love the club. Kieran Tierney loves football – and he loves Celtic.”
The former Liverpool manager did seem to acknowledge that the player would become a target for other players in the near-term, particularly with Celtic expected to return to the Champions League group stages this season. “With so much potential there is always a danger that his head will be turned, but we will cross that bridge when it comes to it.”
There does not appear to be any immediate threat of Tierney leaving Celtic, with the player seemingly content and no concrete reports linking him with a move away.
While the Mirror wrote a piece linking Liverpool with a bid for Tierney back in June, there has been no renewed interest since and there remains a sense that clubs in England are Europe want to see more of the defender at the very highest level before they commit to a potentially huge transfer fee.
However, Celtic must surely brace themselves for bids in the future, particularly if Celtic and Tierney himself can begin to replicate some of their incredible domestic success on the European stage.
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