VALENCIA could put Celtic’s move for fans’ favourite Fraser Forster in jeopardy.
The Spanish cracks are considering signing Chelsea goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga on a two-year loan deal, according to a report in the Daily Mail.
The La Liga club want the Spaniard, who cost a world record £72million when he signed from Athletic Bilbao in August 2018, as a replacement for current shotstopper Jasper Cillessen who is heading for a summer exit.
If Stamford Bridge boss Frank Lampard sanctions the move, it will spark a search for an experienced replacement and Forster, who became a key man in the Hoops’ ninth successive title triumph during his season-long loan from Southampton, has been linked with the London giants.
The 32-year-old former England international is in limbo at the moment with the south coast club frustrating Neil Lennon’s attempts to sign the towering netminder either on another temporary transfer or a permanent deal.
Ralph Hasenhuttl, the Premier League side’s manager, appears to be rethinking the pecking order of his keepers after Alex McCarthy’s blunders allowed Arsenal to win 2-0 in midweek while Angus Gunn, who conceded nine against Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester City, was far from impressive at the start of the season before being eventually axed.
HAMPDEN ROAR…Fraser Forster yells with delight as he lifts the newly-won League Cup in December 2019.
Lampard only has 38-year-old Argentinian shotstopper Willy Cabellero as an experienced last line of defence and will have to replace Arrizabalaga who was brought in at enormous cost to take over from Real Madrid-bound Thibaut Courtois.
The Spaniard’s future at the club has been in doubt since the turn of the year when he was dropped for veteran Cabellero who is out of contract in 12 months’ time.
Arrizabalaga has returned since the restart of the Premier League, but there are reports he is unsettled in London and wants to leave in search of more minutes as he fights for his place in the national team ahead of the Euros next summer.
Celtic, who only have Scott Bain as an experienced netminder on the books at the moment, have had talks with former England international No.1 Joe Hart who will be leaving Burnley this month, as CQN reported yesterday.