By Kieran Maguire

26th Mar, 2021 | 5:00pm

Maguire tips Edouard to stay at Celtic as truth behind Desmond comments revealed

Dermot Desmond claims 2021-22 will be a “transitional year” for Celtic and that bodes well for their chances of keeping hold of Odsonne Edouard.

That is according to finance expert and Football Insider columnist Kieran Maguire, speaking exclusively after Celtic’s principal shareholder gave a rare and forthright interview to the club’s official website.

Addressing the Hoops’ abysmal performance this term and the club’s outlook, the 70-year-old claimed “the 2021/22 season would be a transitional year for the team.”

A summer overhaul is expected amid widespread accusations from the fanbase that the hierarchy has been asleep at the wheel over the last decade.

Edouard – who has netted 20 times this season – is considered one of the most likely candidates to leave, with the 23-year-old persistently linked with a Parkhead exit.

But Maguire insists that Desmond’s comments should give Celtic fans hope of retaining their prize asset in the summer window.

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He told Football Insider correspondent Adam Williams: “The ‘transitional comment is basically saying: ‘We’re not guaranteed to win the league next season as it’s gonna be really tough.’

“What Celtic have been very good at historically is breaking even or making a small loss on a day-to-day basis and then selling one player a year for somewhere in the region of £15-25m. That means they almost always made a profit.

“It could be that they try to hold on to players this season instead. They might be less enthusiastic to let players like Edouard go because they want to invest more and build the playing squad.”

In January, long-standing chief executive Peter Lawwell announced that he would retire at the end of the season.

He will be replaced with Dominic McKay who is leaving his post as chief operating officer for Scottish Rugby to enter the world of football.

In other news, Football Insider can exclusively reveal that prospective manager Roy Keane was interviewed by Celtic this week.