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£4 million Celtic target Brandon Soppy is edging ever closer to leaving Rennes after the Ligue 1 outfit handed fellow right-back Lorenz Assignon a new contract, as reported by Ouest France. 

A move to Glasgow for the 19-year-old Frenchman has been a long time coming. 

Celtic have been linked with Soppy since May 2020, when FootMercato first reported the Hoops’ interest in the turbo-charged teenager.  

Perennial talent-spotters Monaco and RB Leipzig were mentioned as potential destinations at the time too, suggesting Soppy is a popular figure among scouts Europe-wide. 

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And, one year on, it’s Celtic who appear to be leading the chase for the France U18 international as he closes in on a move away from Stade Rennais.

At the weekend, transfer market expert Fabrizio Romano reported talks over a move to Scotland were under way, with Celtic needing to pay a fee in the region of £4 million to get a player they’ve admired for some time through the door at last (L’Equipe).

What’s more, Rennes are unlikely to stand in his way. 

Celtic closing in on Brandon Soppy signing

The Brittany-based outfit have handed 21-year-old Assignon a new contract.

And, according to sporting director Florian Maurice, it is Assignon, rather than Soppy, who will provide competition for first-choice right-back Hamari Traore in the starting XI next season. 

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“For now, it’s (Assignon) I want to rely on, especially for the right-back position,” Maurice admitted.  

“It is he who should be the understudy for Hamari Traore next season.” 

According to Ouest France, Soppy has his bags packed, his farewell “looming”. And Maurice’s comments do nothing to suggest those claims are wide of the mark. 

Should Celtic get a deal over the line, Soppy would arguably be the first signing of the Ange Postecoglou era capable of walking straight into the starting XI.

Following the departures of Jonjoe Kenny, Jeremie Frimpong and Hatem Abd Elhamed, Celtic don’t have a single first-team right-back – unless you count Anthony Ralston.

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