By Alan Hutton

16th Sep, 2020 | 12:59pm

'No way' - Exclusive: Top pundit reacts after £5m offer lodged for Celtic target

Celtic will “walk away” from their pursuit of Ben Davies if Preston North End do not lower their £10million demands, according to Alan Hutton.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Rangers and Scotland star insists there is “no way” the Hoops will splash out an eight-figure fee for a defender in the final year of his contract at Deepdale.

As revealed by Football Insider, the Lilywhites have slapped a £10million price tag on the head of the 25-year-old centre-back after they rejected a £5million offer from Bournemouth.

Celtic are in the hunt for Davies as they seek out potential alternatives for wantaway defender Kristoffer Ajer.

However, Hutton insists that Hoops chief Peter Lawwell will pour cold water on negotiations if Preston are unwilling to budge on their demands.

Hutton told Football Insider: “There’s no way Celtic are paying £10million for him, no chance, so if that’s what they’re after, Celtic will walk away.

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“If it goes on until January and there’s a chance of doing something then, then of course they will and then it’s down to the player – does he want to stay in England or does he fancy his chances up at a team like Celtic, European football?

“If we’re talking £10million here, right now, I would say there was absolutely no chance.” 

Davies played 38 times for Preston last season and played the full 90 minutes of the club’s season opener against Swansea City this term.

Celtic currently have Ajer, Christopher Jullien and new arrival Shane Duffy as their senior centre-back options, while Nir Bitton has also filled in as a makeshift defender.

In other Celtic news, the Hoops are expected to sign a new wide man amid two new twists.