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Club president admits he will sell £3.5m ace to Celtic

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Charlotte FC president Nick Kelly has confirmed that Riley McGree is free to leave with Celtic and Middlesbrough will face the Australia international, telling The Observer.

While Middlesbrough appears to have fended off competition from the Scottish Premiership giants for McGree’s signature, no one can turn down anything at this stage.

Based on 90 million won, Chris Wilder of play-off pursuit Boro has made £3.5m offer for loanee Birmingham City. That is £500,000 more than Celtic were willing to pay.

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However, there is still time for another dramatic late turn. Especially when moving to Glasgow will see McGree reunite with the man who made his international debut at the age of 17 five years ago.

“For us, it is one that is far from over,” explained Charlotte FC president Nick Kelly. “But there are a lot of teams that are currently in talks with (Sporting Director) Zoran (Krneta) to see him (McGree) stay in Europe.

“Clearly the numbers are still being negotiated. But our number one priority is to find a solution that works for both parties.

“In this situation we feel we can reach an agreement that is good for the player and good for the club.”

Could Riley McGree still join Celtic?

Photo by Tony Marshall / Getty Images

Charlotte FC are newcomers to the MLS. They will play the league opening match when the 2022 season begins against DC United next month.

Losing McGree, arguably their most talented footballer, is hardly the ideal start to the proceedings.

But Kelly points out that it’s all part of the club’s strategy. One that revolves around signing talented young players and providing them with a stepping stone to something bigger.

“We want to make sure that the players feel comfortable, that they feel there’s an opportunity to go somewhere meaningful to their careers,” added Kelly.

“We are not going to be one of those clubs that take (a player) hostage.

“If this ends up working for all parties, we think it sends the right message to future players and also to the market that we have the connections we’ve made. promised for the past 18 months.”

It is understood that, if Celtic miss McGree, manager Ange Postecoglou will turn his attention to some alternatives.

He is prioritizing a new attacking midfielder with a fortnight remaining in the transfer window.

Albert Gudmundsson of AZ Alkmaar and Shamrock Rovers star Danny Mandroiu are among those who have been linked recently.

Photo by Seb Daly / Sportsfile via Getty Images

In other news, Stan Collymore claims Ramsey controversial after Aston Villa lose FA Cup

https://www.hitc.com/en-gb/2022/01/13/it-makes-sense-club-president-admits-hed-sell-3-5m-ace-to-celtic/ Club president admits he will sell £3.5m ace to Celtic

Zack Zwiezen

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