By Frank McAvennie

19th Aug, 2020 | 5:00pm

'Not far away' - Exclusive: Celtic backed to beat West Ham in race to sign 'Great' PL player

Frank McAvennie has claimed that Shane Duffy would be an “absolutely great” signing for Celtic this summer. 

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Jason Jones, the former Parkhead hitman admitted that he was a big fan of the Brighton defender, and would love to see him in Glasgow in the coming weeks.

As revealed by Football Insider, the Hoops are understood to be pursuing a deal for the player, but could struggle to meet his wage demands.

Another of McAvennie’s former clubs, West Ham, are also keen on the 28-year-old, but given a choice between the two, McAvennie has made it clear that he would prefer to see him in Scotland.

Speaking to Football Insider, he said: “It depends what the boy wants. He’ll get more money at West Ham.

“But I like the boy. He’d be absolutely great at Celtic. I think he’s a good defender, and he’d be good for West Ham, but I’d like to see him at Celtic. He’s Irish captain and all that, I think he’d be a great signing for Celtic.

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“If he wants to stay in the Premier League then West Ham aren’t a bad club, so I’d be happy.

“But the stories that are going about behind closed doors are that he’s not far away from signing for Celtic – although that can change by the minute until he puts pen on paper.”

Duffy was a Celtic fan as a boy, and has gone on to captain the Republic of Ireland, collecting 33 caps for his country.

The centre-back signed for his current side from Blackburn Rovers in 2016, and has gone on to make 130 appearances for the Seagulls.

In other Celtic news, Noel Whelan has identified a potential problem with the Hoops’ new signing.