Report: Celtic in talks with Manchester United over young defender Tyler Blackett

Celtic are in the market for defensive reinforcements, with Virgil van Dijk's exit reportedly looming.

Celtic are interested in bringing Manchester United academy graduate Tyler Blackett on loan to Parkhead, according to STV Sport.

The 21-year old emerged as a first-team option at Old Trafford at the beginning of last season – benefiting from an injury crisis at the start of Louis van Gaal’s reign - and made 11 appearances in all competitions before finding himself out of the first-team picture at United.

The defender has yet to appear for the Red Devils this season and is behind the likes of Chris Smalling, Phil Jones, Marcus Rojo and newly converted centre-back Daley Blind in the pecking order.

Celtic, on the other hand, are light in the heart of their defence with not much quality cover for Virgil van Dijk and Dedryck Boyata, as things stand.

The situation looks set to worsen with van Dijk’s exit appearing imminent and a move to Southampton due to be finalised before the close of the window – as reported by the Daily Mail.

Celtic's reported loan move for Blackett could prove to be a deal to suit all parties. Celtic would be acquiring a talented defender out to prove he can return as a viable option for Van Gaal, while Blackett would be exposed to European football and the pressures of life as a player helping a club defend their title.

Ronny Deila will be hopeful negotiations for the United youngster go smoothly and a deal is done quickly, as he prepares for life without his talismanic centre-back.

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch