Luca Connell has been the only good thing to come out of Bolton in recent months, but it now looks like the highly-rated youngster could leave.
To make things worse, the Daily Mail report that he could be on his way out for peanuts amid interest from Celtic.
It is claimed that Connell could move for as little as £240,000 if a club from outside England signs him, and Glasgow is a possible destination for the 18-year-old, who only signed an academy contract recently – not a professional.
Here, our FLW Six Point Opinion looks at Connell’s situation at Bolton, and what the future holds.
Who is Luca Connell and what type of player is he?
“Connell can play in both central defence and defensive midfield.
“He did well in his twelve appearances for Bolton last season despite being on the losing end in all but one of those matches.
“He has excellent composure for someone so young and has a real strength in bringing the ball out from defence and getting attacks underway, which should suit him well in his career.”
Is there any chance he could stay at Bolton next season?
“Given the interest in him and the predicament the club is in it seems very unlikely.
“It would be good for the player to play regularly, and League One would be a great place to do that, but he can improve his game elsewhere.
“If he was signed by a top club he would likely be loaned out in his first season, possibly to a Championship club, so that would be a good move for Connell to make.”
Would Celtic be a good move for him?
“Celtic is a fantastic place for a young player to learn the game.
“Connell is ready for the standard of the SPL and he will be surrounded by experienced defenders who have won championships and played in the Champions League.
“Neil Lennon would be a good manager for him to work under too, and Connell would add a lot to his game if he played regularly in Scotland.”
Which other clubs are interested in signing Connell?
“Southampton and Brighton had bids turned down for the defender back in January.
“Tottenham and Wolves are also said to be monitoring the player, so Celtic certainly aren’t the only team looking to sign him.
“As it looks likely he will leave, Bolton will hope it is to a Premier League club, as they will have to pay more in compensation than Celtic.”
How much potential does he have, how far could he go in the game?
“From what he has shown so far he has great maturity, he is level-headed and has the ability to match.
“That means he is ideally placed to build on his positive start in professional football and if he moves somewhere else and plays regularly we will begin to see the best of him.
“Game time is crucial and if he gets that year after year he could easily play in the Premier League one day.”
Would Connell be a big miss for Bolton next year?
“Of course any talented youngster would be sorely missed by a club.
“For Bolton it is slightly different though as the club nor the fans have any idea of what the squad will look like next season, so it is hard to gauge at this moment how big a blow it would be to lose him.
“If Bolton sort themselves out and a new owner comes in who is able to strengthen the squad, it is possible that they could be a title-challenging team, and in that sense, Connell would not be a miss.”Like what the FLW have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!