By Frank McAvennie

21st May, 2023 | 9:07am

Virgil van Dijk cited as Celtic told to complete defender deal - expert

Frank McAvennie has claimed Celtic “must” sign another centre-back this summer.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Hoops striker said boss Ange Postecoglou will be planning to bring in another central defender in the upcoming window.

The Hoops have been forced to start January signing Yuki Kobayashi alongside Carl Starfelt and in place of the injured Cameron Carter-Vickers in recent games.

Since clinching the title and losing their star defender, the Hoops have conceded five goals in their last two games.

According to Sky Sports (16 May), the Celts are looking into signing Netherlands youth centre-back Xavier Mbuyamba who was released by Chelsea’s academy last year.

The defender been compared to Virgil van Dijk by coaches and media in Holland due to his similar playing style and potential.

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The 21-year-old has two years left on his contract at FC Volendam since joining from the Blues’ academy last summer (2022).

This season the defender has made 26 appearances in the Eredivisie with five goals and one assist in those outings.

McAvennie insisted the centre of defence is an area in desperate need of reinforcements.

We have only got two central defenders so I think Ange is going to bring in another centre-half,” he told Football Insider.

I think that is a must for Celtic.

We got Van Dijk and he was a bit raw but right away you knew he was head and shoulders above everyone else, you could actually see it.

His thought process of the game was quicker than everyone else, he could read the game like nobody I have seen.

In other news, Crystal Palace are regularly scouting Celtic star.