Odegaard? Deila reveals how Celtic can attract better than the Madrid star


In the long term, Celtic may end up with players better than the 16-year-old, their manager argues.

Celtic boss Ronny Deila has been discussing his transfer plans for the Scottish champions - and they involve scouting young talent with greater potential than current ability, according to the Scottish Mail on Sunday.

The Celtic head coach has recently been linked with a loan move for Real Madrid's 16-year-old starlet Martin Odegaard, with Deila himself saying he would most certainly look into his availability.

But the 39-year-old insists the Bhoys can actually end up with players better than Madrid's Odegaard.

Indeed, Deila insists Celtic can attract talented youngsters that aren't quite at the teenager's level just yet - but that can eventually be developed into stars of a greater ability. Particularly if they make the right decisions and he, influenced perhaps by the glitz and glamour of life at Real Madrid, doesn't.

"There are players there, maybe not at Odegaard level but close," the Norwegian told reporters. "With a good development, they can be past Odegaard if he makes the wrong decisions and we make the right ones."

The key to Celtic's transfer plans, says Deila, is finding young players of Odegaard's age and giving them the unique opportunity of training with the first team.

That is an opportunity the 39-year-old believes would be in short supply elsewhere - and is also a method of Celtic competing in the transfer market, as ready-made 22-year-olds would not consider the Scottish champions as appealing a prospect.

He said: "If we are going to fight with the best clubs in Europe for the best 22-year-olds, then you can forget it. No chance. The only chance we have to get a world-class player is to go to 16/17-year-olds and say: 'You will train with the first team'."

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