Pavlovic admitted this week that he is ‘flattered’ by Celtic’s interest.

Celtic face competition from another European giant – and a club from England – in their alleged pursuit of the Partizan Belgrade defender Strahinja Pavlovic, according to reports in Portugal.

The Celtic manager, Neil Lennon, is said to have watched Pavlovic in action against Connah’s Quay last month, prompting the teenager to admit, via the Daily Record, that he is ‘flattered’ by the Bhoys interest.

But Pavlovic later confessed a desire to play for another reportedly interested club, Juventus, at some stage of his career.

And A Bola claims that it is not just Juve rivalling Celtic for the Serbian’s signature, with Benfica keen on what would be ‘a player for the future’.

But the Portuguese website stresses that Benfica cannot waste any time, with an English club also ‘in the race’ ahead of Thursday’s Premier League transfer deadline.

It adds that it will take €6 million (around £5.5m) to prise Pavlovic away from Belgrade, where his ‘immediate’ focus remains, as per his comments in the Daily Record.

Celtic have seen centre-backs Dedryck Boyata, Filip Benkovic and Marvin Compper depart since the end of last season, with only Christopher Jullien coming in.

In other news, Report: Pellegrini set to sign West Ham-linked attacker Guardiola once called 'incredible'