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Two clubs linked with misfit Celtic midfielder

Beitar Jerusalem and Hapoel Be’er Sheva are both reported to be interested in signing Ismaila Soro from Celtic.

The midfielder was signed in January 2020 from Bnei Yehuda and was billed as a potential successor for Scott Brown when he arrived.

Fellow new bhoy Patryk Klimala was used sparingly by Neil Lennon but Soro failed to make any appearances before the season was brought to a halt.

Soro had to wait until September of the Lockdown season to make his Celtic debut, coming off the bench in a 5-0 win away to Ross County which marked the first Celtic appearance of Shane Duffy.

It wasn’t until December that Soro was given a mini-run in the team, coming in alongside David Turnbull in the 3-2 Europa League dead rubber at home to Lille.

A mini revival came to a halt at Ibrox in January 2021, Dubai followed with Celtic’s season descending into car crash mode.

Soro was used out of necessity by Ange Postecoglou in his early weeks in charge of the club, when the January transfer window arrived with Matt O’Riley, Reo Hatate, Yosuke Ideguchi and Daizen Maeda Soro dropped completely out of contention.

Going out on loan to Portuguese side Arouca didn’t result in a follow up offer but at lunchtime today The Sun reported:

Soro was signed by Celtic from Israeli outfit Bnei Yehuda in 2020 for £2 million after spending two years in the country.

And both Beitar Jerusalem and league runners-up Hapoel Be’er Sheva have made enquiries to sign the 25-year-old.

Soro still has a year left on his deal and Celtic are weighing up whether to rip up his contract and allow him to leave for nothing – like fellow flop, keeper Vasilis Barkas who has now signed for Utrecht – or seek a modest transfer fee.

Any deal that gets Soro off the wage bill will be welcomed, with his agent certain to be well aware of that as he attempts to broker a deal for a player clearly surplus to requirements.

There has been no sighting of Soro in Celtic’s pre-season with Odin Thiago Holm and Kwon Hyeok-kyu brought in to compete for midfield places with Daniel Kelly promoted from the B team.

Soro will forever be associated with a disastrous clutch of signings that also included Albian Ajeti, Vasilis Barkas, Vakoun Bayo, Marian Shved as well as Klimala.

One by one they have all left the club having made very little impression except on the pay-roll.

Postecoglou appears to have put in place a very different recruitment process, although no system will ever be full proof risks can be minimised.

Before joining Celtic Soro had played in the Ivory Coast, Moldova and Israel which hardly creates the image of an emerging talent.

When he arrived at the club Brown and Callum McGregor were well established as first picks with Tom Rogic, Nir Bitton and Ryan Christie already at the club.

If a deal can be struck for Soro to move on it will leave Albian Ajeti and James McCarthy as the only two high earners needing to have their futures settled. Ajeti is in the final year of his contract while McCarthy is halfway through a deal that runs until May 2025.

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