Why Celtic re-signing Declan Gallagher would be a shrewd move
The Scotland international has just six months remaining on his current deal at Fir Park but an extension clause in his contract could scupper hopes of securing a lucrative return to Parkhead. As per the report, Gallagher would automatically have a one-year extension activated once he makes 25 league appearances for Motherwell this season.
The centre-back has already featured 20 times for the club in the Scottish Premiership so far this term and is determined not to play the remaining five games. Gallagher wants to force through a move to Celtic while Hibernian, Aberdeen and Blackburn Rovers are also keeping close tabs on his contract situation. (h/t Daily Record)
The 29-year-old represented Celtic across various age-groups earlier in his career after coming through the club’s youth system. However, he never made a competitive appearance for the Hoops, starting his professional career at Stranraer and Clyde in the fourth-tier.
Gallagher impressed for Dundee in the top-flight and went on to represent Livingston in the Championship and League One.
Gallagher returned to the Scottish Premiership for the first time in five years after guiding Livingston to promotion at the end of the 2017-18 season. He joined Motherwell on a free transfer in the following summer after spending one more season with the Lions and has reached unprecedented heights since his move to Fir Park.
The centre-back has been a regular starter for the Fir Park outfit over the past 18 months, featuring 60 times in all competitions so far. Gallagher’s impressive run of form saw him earn a maiden call-up to Scotland’s senior side last year and he amassed 7 international caps for his nation so far.
Putting things into perspective, Declan Gallagher has impressed as a late bloomer in Scottish football and Celtic should definitely consider offering him a return this month. From starting his career in the fourth-tier and now a Scotland regular, it has been a roller-coaster journey for the centre-back in his professional career.
Celtic can certainly do with some fresh additions to their backline in January. Christopher Jullien has been ruled out for the next three to four months after picking up an injury once again. Brighton loanee Shane Duffy has often struggled for consistency while utility star Nir Bitton hasn’t really been at his best this season.
With Hatem Abd Elhamed also a peripheral figure in Neil Lennon’s set-up, the arrival of a seasoned campaigner like Gallagher this month would offer the manager some real depth and quality heading into a crucial second-half of the season.
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The extension clause in Gallagher’s contract at Motherwell is expected to make things complicated but Celtic will be hopeful of bringing their former academy star back to Parkhead, nevertheless. The centre-back has been playing at a very high level over the past couple of years and still has plenty to offer at 29.