Football Insider understands that a string of top flight British clubs are showing an interest in Oxford United winger Callum O’Dowda. The £1million rated starlet has gained admirers in the form of Manchester United, Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur, as well as Scottish giants Celtic.
The left-sided midfielder was the subject of interest from Championship sides Derby County and Birmingham City in the January transfer window, however personal terms are believed to have been a stumbling block.
Celtic are particularly keen to sign the player as he would hold a realistic chance of immediately gaining regular first team football, which is unlikely with the English Premier League sides for the near future at least. With James Forrest set to leave the club, Ronny Deila is eager to sign a similar type of player and O’Dowda certainly fits that mould.
The Republic of Ireland Under-21 international scored twice last weekend as Oxford continued their push for a place in League One next season with a victory over Barnet. That took his season total to seven goals with the U’s, who are managed by ex-Portsmouth and Blackburn Rovers manager Michael Appleton.
The 20-year-old has been enjoying a regular run in the starting eleven in 2016 and has now started 16 League Two games overall. He has also appeared as a substitute 18 times as well, indicating the Appleton has been keen to ease him into the first-team fold and not apply too much pressure to the clearly talented youngster.
Oxford may seem likely to be playing at a higher level next season but it remains to be seen if O’Dowda will be involved too. The U’s are highly likely to be receiving plenty of offers over the summer for one of their star players, which include goal-machine Kemar Roofe as well. Perhaps moving to one of the three Barclays Premier League teams could involve him being loaned back. Nevertheless, Appleton will be hopeful that offering League One football could be enough to keep him at the Kassam Stadium for one more season at the very least.