Rodgers Isn't Giving Up Yet on Roberts; Rodgers Will Not Give Up the Chase for Roberts Yet

Daily Mail (London), August 8, 2017 | Go to article overview

Rodgers Isn't Giving Up Yet on Roberts; Rodgers Will Not Give Up the Chase for Roberts Yet


Byline: JOHN MCGARRY

BRENDAN RODGERS' hopes of persuading Patrick Roberts to return to Celtic were given a boost last night after OGC Nice opted to sign a homegrown alternative to the winger.

Ahead of next week's Champions League play-off with Astana, the Parkhead manager has intimated that he hoped to bring the 20-year-old Manchester City player back to Glasgow on another long-term loan or on a permanent basis. Rodgers' chances of doing so looked increasingly unlikely yesterday morning after it emerged that the freespending French side were primed to table a deal of their own to take the player to the Cote D'Azur initially on a one-year loan.

Last night, though, Nice moved swiftly to snare Monaco star Allan Saint-Maximin -- another prodigiously talented player in Roberts' mould -- to apparently kill off their interest in the young Englishman. With clubs from across Europe keen on the former Fulham player, Celtic still face a huge battle to land him for a second spell.

Until any deal is finalised, though, Celtic assistant manager Chris Davies is adamant that the door remains open for the winger. 'I've seen things said about Patrick (below) over the last few weeks, that he's been linked here and there, but I've not heard anything for definite,' he said. 'All I can say is that he was really good for us. We rate him very highly as a player. There is a home for him here, but ultimately, he belongs to another club. 'It will be a collective decision by the player and the club as to where is best for him to go or whether he stays there.' Celtic take on Kilmarnock in the Betfred Cup this evening with the row from Rodgers' war of words with Hearts' stand-in boss Jon Daly still simmering. The Celtic manager and the Tynecastle caretaker boss became embroiled in a heated exchange before and after their clubs' Premiership curtain-raiser at Parkhead on Saturday.

iled nd Rodgers lit the touch paper on Friday by claiming Ian Cathro's philosophy on the game was at odds with Hearts' recruitment and went on to cite the head coach being handed a note by director of football Craig Levein at Pittodrie as another example of him being undermined.

ng Daly responded 24 hours later with a scathing attack on the Celtic manager, describing his comments as 'absolutely disgusting' and 'disgraceful' before accusing Rodgers of only publicly expressing opinions on the structures at other clubs in Scotland. …

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