Celtic news: Former Parkhead star John Collins warns about letting ‘special player’ Olivier Ntcham leave clubby David Fowler
OLIVIER Ntcham has been linked with a move away from Celtic this summer - perhaps as a makeweight in a permanent deal for goalkeeper Fraser Forster.
But the Parkhead side's former star and assistant manager John Collins has warned them that he is a "special talent" who "won't be easily replaced".
SunSport revealed in February that Saints had targeted the former France Under-21 star.
We also told you that the South Coast club are understood to be open to talks as they look to get their high-earning back-up goalkeeper off the books.
But Collins feels that the 24-year-old Frenchman is showing his worth after providing only bursts of his best form since his £4.5million move from Manchester City in 2017.
He would be quite an asset to give up - even though Lennon might consider that is worth it if helps him land the abilities of Forster on a permanent basis.
Another move for Norwegian winger Mohamed Elyounoussi could also be on the cards.
Collins told the Daily Record: “Olivier’s an excellent player and I’d be sad to see him leave Scottish football, that’s for sure.
“It’ll come down to the manager’s decision but he’s a very good footballer, he’s in a high bracket and obviously you’d want to keep him.
"Players with his ability aren’t easily replaced, you need to weigh that up as the boy is maturing into that special talent we all knew him to be.
“People forget that he’s still a very young player and he’s also had injuries which have held him back.
“Hopefully he’s now over those injuries and can now continue developing.
“He’s playing Champions League and Europa League football every season with Celtic and not many clubs provide that kind of platform year on year.
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“The argument that he needs to move to a top league to develop his potential isn’t accurate.
“There’s no doubt that whoever gets Olivier Ntcham is getting a top, top player.
“If he does leave Celtic then it’s not good news for them but whoever gets him will discover just how good he is.”