By Danny Wright
Celtic have signed Irish wonderkid Barry Coffey on a three-year deal, according to a report.
The Daily Record claims that the Hoops have beaten off competition from three Premier League giants to sign the teenage playmaker.
It is understood that Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United were all vying for the 16-year-old, who has been playing for Irish side Nenagh AFC.
According to the Record, Coffey had played for Chelsea’s youngsters at a tournament in Rotterdam last year and has also been offered trials by both Man City and United.
Coffey has been pictured signing a contract next to a Celtic shirt with his name on, although there has been no official confirmation from the club as of yet.
— James Scott (@Jamesscott89Com) June 13, 2017
Celtic have produced a large amount of top talent through their academy in recent years and there’s no doubt that they will be hoping that Coffey can join that list.
Kieran Tierney, Aiden McGeady, Charlie Mulgrew and Tony Watt have all graduatde from the youth set-up in recent times, while there are also a number of promising youngsters currently vying for a promotion to the first-team such as Jack Aitchison and Anthony Ralston.
Football Insider Verdict
Celtic have a lot of breathing space to try and invest in their youth set-up due to their first-team being so far ahead of all other clubs in Scotland, including Rangers. The Light Blues are making progress under Pedro Caixinha, but they are still so far off the standard that it means transfer funds can be used to snap up kids like Coffey. The 16-year-old seems like a top talent, but that can be the case for many youngsters who come and go in the Hoops academy. It will mean a lot for Celtic to know that they can fend off some of the top teams when it comes to acquiring these types of players though.
In other Celtic news, Watt believes that this Hoops ace has answered his critics.