Sheffield Wednesday playmaker Barry Bannan has urged Celtic to swoop for free agent striker Steven Fletcher, who left the Owls earlier this summer.
Fletcher opted against signing a short-term extension ahead of the Championship restart – meaning he walked away from Hillsborough as a free agent at the end of June and was unavailable for the final part of the 2019/20 campaign.
Despite being hampered by injury issues, the 33-year-old showed his quality once again for Wednesday this term and was their top scorer – firing in 13 goals in 30 appearances.
Celtic boss Neil Lennon is speaking in an interview with the Daily Record desperate to add some support upfront for Odsonne Eduoard and, speaking in an interview with the Daily Record, Bannan suggested his former teammate would be the perfect addition.
He said: “Steven is one of the best strikers I’ve ever played with. He’s one of those players who, until you actually play alongside him, you don’t understand how good he is.
“I thought before that with all the headed goals he scores, he was just a big striker type, but you play alongside him and realise he’s nothing like that.
“His ability with his feet is second to none and he is really the all-round striker.
“It’s no-brainer to sign Fletch.”
Bannan suggested that the 33-year-old would slot into the Celtic squad perfectly, providing a completely different option to the weapons currently at Lennon’s disposal.
He said: “When you look at the strikers in the Celtic squad, they have Edouard, Leigh Griffiths, and Patryk Klimala but Fletch has something completely different to all of them.
“He’s one of those guys you can knock it up to in the air and it might be 40-60 against him but he has the knack of getting hold of it.
“He doesn’t just flick it harmlessly anywhere. He’s brilliant at taking it down and he brings others into the game.
“Celtic have brilliant players who play behind Edouard such as Ryan Christie, James Forrest, and Callum McGregor who like to join in and he’d be absolutely brilliant within that Celtic team.”
Joining the Hoops would see Fletcher return to the SPFL after more than a decade away.
The striker began his career with Hibernian – firing in 40 goals in 140 appearances for the Scottish club – but left to join Burnley in 2009 and hasn’t featured in the division since.
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Clearly, Bannan has a huge amount of respect and admiration for his teammate and friend, that’s no surprise given the years they spent together with Wednesday.
The Scottish striker could be an interesting addition from a Celtic perspective and would certainly give them a different option to the likes of Eduoard.
He showed last year that he was still good enough to thrive at Championship level, which should make him a useful player in the SPFL – though European football would likely prove a tougher test.