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Callum Styles to Celtic: Is it a good potential move? Would he start? What does he offer?

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Former Scottish Premiership side Celtic are currently weighing up a move for Barnsley full-back Callum Styles ahead of the January transfer window, as per The Sun on Sunday (19/9 print edition, page 69).

The 21-year-old, who has plied his trade at Oakwell both as a central midfielder and a left wing-back, has remained a key part of the Tykes’ first-team plans this season under ex-manager Markus Schopp and the Austrian’s successor Poya Asbaghi, playing in all but two of their league games so far this term.

Unfortunately for him, it has been a much less successful campaign so far for his team compared to the last, playing a crucial role in elevating the South Yorkshire outfit from relegation danger to fifth spot and a well-earned play-off place at the end of the 2020/21 campaign, putting himself within three games of Premier League football.

Quiz: Have Barnsley signed a player from each of these 20 clubs in the last 5 seasons?

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Have Barnsley signed a player from Luton Town in the last five seasons?

Unfortunately, they fell at the penultimate hurdle in the play-off semi-final against Swansea City, and now find themselves 23rd in the table and seven points adrift of safety after winning just two of their opening 23 league games of 2021/22.

Looking destined for League One at this stage, he could be offered an escape route of out Oakwell with Celtic reported to be interested in his signature, though they may have to fork out a hefty fee with his current side able to retain him until 2024.

Ahead of this potential move, we discuss three key questions that could be key indicators as to whether this could be a good move for Celtic.

Is it a good potential move?

Styles is a talented and versatile player that will only get better as he gains more experience.

He may already have nearly 150 competitive appearances to his name with Bury and his current side, but at 21, he still has plenty of room for improvement and that should be a reason for optimism for Celtic fans.

However, it does remain to be seen how much Barnsley would demand for his services as one of the first names on their teamsheet and the club under no real pressure to sell considering his contract situation.

In fact, it may take the 21-year-old to submit a transfer request to lower the Tykes’ price, although he’s unlikely to take this drastic action at this stage considering how deep in trouble his team is.

Nonetheless, this could be a worthy investment for the long term and with his age and potential, would undoubtedly become one of the Glasgow outfit’s most important assets.

Would he start?

There’s currently no chance of him getting in the starting lineup on the left wing ahead of talented 22-year-old Jota, who has recorded five goals and five assists in 11 Scottish top-tier appearances this term and arguably offers more going forward than the Barnsley utility man.

At left-back, Liam Scales and Adam Montgomery are already youthful options there that could end up keeping Styles out of the starting lineup.

The latter is just 19 years old, but both have experience in the Europa League unlike the 21-year-old and this may count against the Tykes’ defender/midfielder if he signs on the dotted line at Celtic Park.

And it doesn’t get much better in the middle of the park for him either, with David Turnball, Callum McGregor and Tom Rogic seeming like a solid midfield trio.

So as things stand, it doesn’t look like he will be able to force his way into the starting eleven straight away but a change in formation could change that, especially with the youngster being accustomed to playing in a three-at-the-back system.

What does he offer?

Something that has already been mentioned before but needs highlighting again is his versatility.

Although he predominantly played as a left wing-back under Valerien Ismael last season, a role he mastered extremely well as he was able to chip in with four goals and four assists last term, he has played regularly in central midfield.

And with Covid coming into play to cause havoc alongside injuries and suspensions, this is the type of versatility that’s needed to provide depth when injury crises occur, an asset that could be crucial in Ange Postecoglou’s winning back the Scottish Premiership from Rangers.

Not afraid to put in a tackle, the 21-year-old would be a great weapon to have in midfield to break up play and also isn’t afraid to get a shot away.

He may have only scored once and registered one assist this season, but if last season is anything to go by, he certainly has plenty of offer going forward and going back, making him the ideal signing to have to provide depth and competition.


A 21-year-old Reading FC fan and writer who graduated from the University for the Creative Arts in the summer with a degree in Journalism and Media Production. Other topics written about include politics, mental health and education.

ScoopDragon Football News Network

Article title: Callum Styles to Celtic: Is it a good potential move? Would he start? What does he offer?

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