By Abigail Withey
Queens Park Rangers’ defender Steven Caulker looks increasingly likely to join Celtic on a free transfer this summer, according to a recent report.
West London Sport claims that the Championship club are hoping to offload the 25-year-old on a free transfer with the potential of a sell-on clause within the deal.
The media outlet reports that discussions between the Championship outfit and Celtic have already taken place and now a move is expected to follow.
It is said that Parkhead boss Brendan Rodgers recently reached out to Caulker to speak about the players personal problems after a number of misdemeanours.
The report states that the former England international has spoken out about his mental health issues as well as his addictions to alcohol and gambling.
Caulker moved to the west London side from Cardiff for £9million back in 2014 and currently has a year left on his contract with the club.
The one-time England international has not appeared for QPR since October and has been on a number of loans including a half-season move to Liverpool during the previous campaign.
Rodgers looks to make Caulker his fourth signing of the transfer window as the treble winning boss has already secured midfield trio Olivier Ntcham, Kundai Benyu and Jonny Hayes.
Football Insider verdict
Although Celtic already have a strong squad in place, if Brendan Rodgers is hopeful of retain the club’s three domestic titles next season he would be wise to bolster his defensive options. Already the Celtic boss has recruited three midfielders, but with fellow centre-back Dedryck Boyata out for the beginning of the season, the manager would be smart to add another defender like Caulker. Despite previous issues surrounding addictions, a move to Parkhead could be really beneficial to the Englishman as Rodgers has already reached out to the defender to offer his support. This would install trust and respect in his new manager if he was to make the move this summer and ultimately help the Hoops’ boss to strengthen his backline ready for the 2017/18 campaign.
In other Celtic transfer news, the club is keeping close tabs on this 23-year-old free agent as clubs make offers.