Celtic are in a position now where they must seriously think about the future of Scott Brown.
Just a few weeks ago, the prospect of Brown departing at the end of the season seemed unthinkable, despite the fact that his contract is only due to run until 1 July.
But the 33-year-old’s recent absence due to injury has coincided with Celtic’s best run of form this season. Brendan Rodgers’ Hoops have thrived without their captain, looking quicker, more dynamic and scoring 20 goals in just four league games.
Furthermore, reports in the Mail suggest that Brown could be offered a tempting escape route in the autumn of his career, with A-League hopefuls Western Melbourne keen to take the former Scotland skipper Down Under.
But have Celtic already discovered the man who could be Brown’s long-term successor?
But, with £20 million in the bank following the deadline-day sale of Moussa Dembele to Lyon, Cetic have plenty of money to play with in January, and suddenly £9 million for former France U20 ace Trebel does not seem quite so daunting.
The deep-lying midfielder is renowned for his intelligent distribution and his ability to win back possession and start attacks from deep.
Six years younger than Brown, Trebel could show there is life at Celtic without the veteran Hoops hero.