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Celtic are confident of beating Aston Villa and Leeds United to the signing of £3 million Crystal Palace midfielder James McCarthy, according to 90Min.

After years of waiting, it seems that a boyhood Hoops fanatic could finally see his lifelong dream become a reality.

McCarthy has never hid his desire to don that iconic green and white kit, after all.

After just one impressive season at the heart of Crystal Palace’s midfield, 90Min suggests that Celtic are increasingly confident that the Leeds, Aston Villa and Newcastle target will be plying his trade in Scotland this season.

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At the age of 29, McCarthy is in the prime of his career and, most importantly, appears to have put those nagging injury issues behind him at Selhurst Park.

McCarthy featured in 33 of Palace’s 38 Premier League games in 2019/20.

“A class player,” manager Roy Hodgson told OTB Sport after the former Everton and Wigan enforcer played a major role in a 2-2 draw with Manchester City earlier this year.  

“I thought the action that he performed for our equalizing goal was quite incredible. To win the ball back that late in the game, to win a difficult challenge, to get himself back up on his feet and produce that pass, that was a real class act.”

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Celtic, however, are not exactly short of quality, quantity or ‘class’ at the heart of their engine room, especially when you consider that Ismaila Soro and Scott Robertson were both expected to play bigger roles in 2020/21.

But maybe McCarthy’s departure could open the door for Olivier Ntcham, a player with as much ambition as he has agility, to finally seal a move to one of Europe’s major leagues.

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