This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict‘ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Scottish giants Celtic are monitoring Barnsley youngster Callum Styles ahead of a potential January transfer swoop, according to The Sun (19/12, p69).
The 21-year-old signed for the Tykes in 2019 from Bury and despite arriving at Oakwell as a midfielder, Styles featured mostly under Valerien Ismael last season as a left-wing-back.
Styles starred for the Yorkshire side last season and despite playing in a struggling side in 2021-22, he has still been one of the club’s better performers.
Quiz: Have Barnsley signed a player from each of these 20 clubs in the last 5 seasons?
Celtic were linked with Derby’s Lee Buchanan back in October so they are clearly searching for a new left-sided player – is Styles the right fit for them though? The FLW team have given their thoughts.
It is no real surprise to see Celtic with an interest in Callum Styles, and whilst he has been unable to replicate the success he saw last year, he is still an exciting prospect.
Styles has the technical ability, vision and intelligence required to operate as a midfielder in the Championship, but he is equally as competent at left-back.
This sort of versatility makes him a real dependable figure and even through Barnsley’s misery at the moment, it is still clear to see that he possesses a lot of talent.
Styles is a player who has an incredibly high ceiling, and I am surprised that clubs are not queuing up for him at the moment, but perhaps this initial interest from Celtic could attract Premier League clubs to make it a race.
Styles is certainly a player that Celtic should continue to pursue – he would be a terrific signing.
This could certainly be a decent signing for Celtic if they can pull it off.
It does seem as though the Scottish giants need to add a left-back to their ranks, with that an area where they are lacking on options with senior experience.
Styles is certainly a player who could fill that void – with almost 150 senior appearances in his career already – and given he excelled during Barnsley’s run to the top six last season, he could well flourish in a Celtic side competing for trophies in Scotland.
At his age as well, Styles still has plenty of time to develop and improve in his career, meaning he could be an asset for many years to come, and consequentially, this could be well worth pursuing for Celtic.
Although Celtic may need to bolster their squad next month in order to bolster their chances of winning the Scottish Premiership, they ought to avoid making a move for Callum Styles.
The 21-year-old, who has featured in centre-midfield and on the left by Barnsley during the current term, may not be ready to feature at this level for the Hoops as he has only managed to average an underwhelming WhoScored match rating of 6.58 in the Championship this season.
Considering that Jota is set to make his return to action in the New Year, Styles could struggle to overtake the winger in the pecking order at Celtic if he does seal a switch to the Scottish outfit.
Instead of taking a risk on Styles, Ange Postecoglou ought to be looking into the possibility of signing someone with more experience as his side look to dethrone Rangers.