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‘Went off the boil two years ago’ ‘Feels we’ve taken a step back’ ‘I’m underwhelmed’ Celtic fans react to Ryan Fraser speculation

Celtic fans were mainly underwhelmed as they reacted to speculation that Ryan Fraser could be a transfer target for Brendan Rodgers.

A well followed Newcastle Twitter account carried the story with the Scotland winger badly out of favour as Eddie Howe fine tunes Newcastle for the demands of the Champions League.

Fraser season 2019/20 was one of the top players in the EPL, his stats compared favourably with everyone upto Eden Hazard but like the Belgian his career appears to have peaked with little suggestion that he is about to return to his formidable best.

Bournemouth seemed fairly relaxed about the winger running down his contract, he had provided an exceptional return on the £400,000 that they had paid Aberdeen in 2014 when they were playing in League One.

As the 2019/20 season developed it was clear that Bournemouth’s mid-table place in the EPL was under threat. After a three month break there were a few contract issues around when the season resumed in mid-June, Fraser made it clear that he wouldn’t be putting a lucrative move in jeopardy which punctured his relationship with Howe and Bournemouth.

All of the plans for free agents in the summer of 2020 were up in the air with clubs facing uncertainty, months of empty stadiums and concerns that TV contracts could be redrawn as fans looked away from matches that appeared meaningless without the passions of supporters.

There was speculation that Celtic might be interested in the free agent but that was short lived, Newcastle came in with the big money as Howe took time out while Bournemouth tried to deal with relegation, empty stadiums and a mini player exodus.

When Steve Bruce was sacked by Newcastle in October 2021 a fortnight of uncertainty followed before Fraser’s worse nightmare came true with the appointment of Howe as Newcastle boss.

An uneasy peace broke out, Howe had very little to work with but did keep Newcastle up from a seemingly hopeless starting position with last summer his first real opportunity to lay down plans with his former Bournemouth favourite surplus to requirements.

Celtic have had a reputation for reviving players that looked to have left their best days behind them with Joe Hart and Scott Sinclair two very obvious examples.

How much interest and ambition Fraser has is unknown, he has enjoyed the riches of the EPL for six seasons and may not have the appetite for a fresh challenge and the demands expected at Celtic.

At the age of 29 he should have some good seasons ahead, maybe he is just looking for that opportunity, the chance to prove people wrong and hit top form again.

Celtic are running short on Academy players and Scottish trained players for their UEFA squad.

Very little news is seeping out of Celtic regarding transfers, the speculators have been on the trail of Tete but it seems more realistic that Rodgers will have discussed Fraser, he’ll have a better idea of where the former Aberdeen man is than any spreadsheet.

Fraser of Celtic? It shouldn’t be completely dismissed.

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