By Noel Whelan

31st Jan, 2021 | 6:43pm

Whelan View: Celtic stampede for exit underway after 8-figure deal completed - Exclusive

Celtic stars are “desperate” to follow in the footsteps of Jeremie Frimpong and leave Parkhead — and the club won’t stand in their way. 

That is according to former Aberdeen striker Noel Whelan, speaking exclusively to Football Insider after the Dutch full-back completed an £11.5million switch to Bayer Leverkusen.

Frimpong is the first big-name Celtic departure in 2021 but the ex-Aberdeen star says he might not be the last.

This site revealed that 22-year-old striker Odsonne Edouard is willing to wait until the summer to get a big-money move, while midfielder Olivier Ntcham could be on his way before tomorrow’s 11 PM transfer deadline.

And Whelan expects there to be “big changes” in the summer, both in terms of incoming and outgoing transfers, and that the Parkhead hierarchy will be willing to listen to offers for any of Neil Lennon’s squad.

Whelan told Football Insider: “I think the fact they’re not going to win the league this year has forced their hand a lot quicker than they would have liked. They’re not going to catch Rangers.

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“As much as they think they might put on a charge, they’re not going to catch them, it’s simple. That league is done, so that probably makes it a lot easier to sell players right now knowing that they can get away with a wing-back leaving for £11.5m.

“There’s going to be changes in the summer, I expect big changes: players going out and players coming in. I think there needs to be a culture change at that football club because some players are just not bothered about playing there anymore and they’re desperate to get out of that football club, or not play for Neil Lennon, whichever one it may be.

“There’s something not right there at the minute with players, the manager and that club so it doesn’t surprise me. I think they’re resigned to the fact now that they’re not winning the league. That’s 10-in-a-row gone.

“Right now, when an offer comes in for £11.5m for any of their players, I think they’ll consider it because they’ve got nothing to lose.”

A 2-1 loss to St. Mirren on Saturday means Celtic remain 23 points behind runaway leaders Rangers in the Scottish Premiership.

The Hoops crashed out of the Europa League in the group stages too, winning just one of six matches in the competition.

In other news, Celtic are in talks regarding a move for a highly-rated Championship defender.