Three reasons why Celtic should wrap up Rodgers reunion with reportedly available PL playmaker
COMMENT By Will Butcher
Brendan Rodgers would bolster his Celtic side’s chances of reaching the Champions League knockout stages with the signing of Ruben Loftus-Cheek.
The Times claim the 21-year-old playmaker is eyeing a loan move away from Chelsea this summer after becoming frustrated with his lack of first-team opportunities under Antonio Conte.
Here, Football Insider analyses three reasons why Celtic should move for Chelsea’s number 14 ahead of the summer transfer window.
Former Liverpool boss Rodgers began his coaching career with Chelsea’s youth side, helping the likes of current Celtic star Scott Sinclair nurture their potential into real talent. Along with Sinclair, Rodgers also worked with attacking midfielder Loftus-Cheek and will know him well from his Stamford Bridge days. Bringing him north of the border would form a reunion with the out-of-favour Chelsea star, and could bring the best out of the England Under-21 international. Loftus-Cheek will know what Rodgers expects from him and will be used to his expectations and requirements, and that could see him thrive on Parkhead next season.
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Armstrong future in doubt
The Express claim that Premier League trio Everton, West Brom and newly-promoted Brighton are all interested in signing 14-goal midfielder Stuart Armstrong, who has broken into Rodgers’ side this season and thrived. With an £8million price tag on his head, interested sides could see the 25-year-old as a cheap alternative to bringing someone as prolific in from the top flight of English football or from Europe. Seeing the former Dundee United star would leave Rodgers would a huge void to fill in between the midfield an attack, and Loftus-Cheek would prove a perfect replacement should he be brought to Glasgow.
Although Loftus-Cheek has made only 32 senior Chelsea appearances since his debut back in January 2015 just eight days after turning 19, the young playmaker already has two Premier League winners’ medal under his belt. That champions ethos would help him fit right at home in Rodgers’ Hoops side, who are on course to complete a marvellous treble in his first season as Bhoys manager. Celtic have already wrapped up the Scottish Premiership and League Cup title, and are in the final of the Scottish Cup against Aberdeen. Bringing Loftus-Cheek to Celtic would be pivotal in helping Rodgers complete the same feat next time round.
In other Celtic transfer news, Chris Davies has revealed that this in-demand star wants to remain on Parkhead.