Has Celtic's manager situation cost them a shot at signing Joey Barton?
Barton is out of contract in June and is keen to explore his options despite leading Burnley back into the Premier League.
Last summer he was quizzed on social media whether he would entertain a move north of the border, and admitted that he would only do so when Rangers joined Celtic in the top flight.
There was no indication one way or another which way he would sway, and Barton as a free agent is soon to be available for hire, with Rangers in pole position.
Would love to one day. Maybe when the Old Firm is back it would appeal more. Always wanted to attend/play in one. https://t.co/6S9ILQi3HM— Joseph Barton (@Joey7Barton) August 5, 2015
Right now it appears to be a one horse race as far as Scottish sides are confirmed to sign Barton - and it is not a surprise with Celtic left in limbo by an unresolved managerial situation.
The club have not announced or even decided on a successor to Ronny Deila, and the lack of progress in this regard leaves them hindered in the transfer market.
Celtic cannot put together a serious case to sign a player like Barton right now while they are without a manager to sell a vision of the future.
This could not only have impinged on a potential deal for Barton, who could have been a desired player by a potential manager, but other targets too.
The Bhoys need to get the right man in, but they cannot afford to wait too long or they will continue to offer rivals Rangers a free run at potential signings until they do.