Stoke City, Opinion: Stoke City should eye newly-available Celtic man amid growing Harry Souttar interest

Opinion: Stoke City should eye newly-available Celtic man amid growing Harry Souttar interest

Stoke City man Harry Souttar has seen his stock rise further since his return from a long-term injury.

Stoke City’s academy graduate had been out for a long time through a knee injury before announcing his comeback in emphatic fashion on the biggest stage of all. He starred for Australia out in Qatar, helping them progress to the Round of 16.

The 24-year-old had only played once for the Potters before heading out for the World Cup too.

The level of his performances has since drawn plenty of interest and Leicester City are said to be ahead of West Ham and Wolves in the chase. With that in mind, Stoke City would be wise to consider a replacement, and one they should have in mind is Celtic’s Stephen Welsh…

On the market…

The 22-year-old centre-back has spent his entire career to date with Celtic, breaking into the first-team towards the end of the 2020/21 campaign. However since his promising breakthrough, regular minutes have been hard to come by and now, Sky Sports (Transfer Centre Live, 10.01.23, 10:33) has said the club are willing to listen to offers for the Scot.

With Welsh on the market, he could be an ideal successor to Souttar if he heads to the top-flight.

Coatbridge-born Welsh can play as a centre-back or a right-back and at 22, he’s still got the best years of his career ahead. Stoke City have been a great club for development central defenders in recent years and Welsh could be one of the next off the press in Staffordshire if a move was to come to fruition.

He’s a strong passer of the ball and a solid aerial presence. He’s a composed figure on the ball and his ability to read the game often sees him cut out attacks and clear before being forced into making a significant tackle, not that he’ll shy away from that either if needs be.

By no means is he the complete package, hence why he’s not starting for Celtic all that often. However, a move to Stoke City could see him maximise his potential and fill the gap left by the sought-after Souttar if he does head for pastures new.

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