It is looking increasingly unlikely that Jack Hendry will be a Celtic player by the end of this month.
The Daily Mail reported in December that the Hoops were enamoured by Dundee’s 22-year-old centre-back, making a £500,000 bid for a player who Brendan Rodgers himself described as ‘outstanding’ after a star performance at Parkhead two months previously.
But, amid further interest from Premier League trio Newcastle United, Southampton and Crystal Palace, Dundee manager Neil McCann took it upon himself to tell The Courier that he did not expect Hendry to be going anywhere in January.
And perhaps Celtic have got the message. The champions were hoping to sign another centre-half after the addition of Marvin Compper from RB Leipzig but appear to be looking at another Premier League loan instead of stepping up their pursuit of Hendry.
The 20-year-old is a classy operator who was brought to Arsenal in 2015 as a defensive midfielder but appears to have been moulded into a ball-playing centre-half. Bielik thrived in his new role during a short-term loan spell at Birmingham City last season.
And he could align perfectly with Rodgers’ play-out-from-the-back philosophy at Celtic. Tall and rangy yet technically gifted and blessed with an eye for a pass, Arsene Wenger would not pay £2.5 million for a youngster unless he believed he was every inch a modern talent.
Bielik, in many ways, looks an alternative to Hendry. Perhaps Celtic see the Pole as a stop-gap until the summer, when Dundee may be more open to offers for their prize asset.