Celtic target £2m transfer for 21-year-old ‘not quite at the level’ for Rodgers

13 August 2023 - 2:01 pm


That is according to Dean Jones, who notes that Celtic have taken a close look at Mbuyamba this summer. But the Premiership giants elected against making the 21-year-old a priority as they questioned his current ability. Hoops scouts doubted he would enjoy an instant impact.

Yet the Glasgow club are now turning their attentions back to the one-time Netherlands U19 star. Celtic are making increasing efforts to agree to a transfer with Volendam for Mbuyamba with the view of him developing into an important aspect of manager Rodgers’ future plans.

Celtic step up their interest in Mbuyamba’s transfer from Volendam

Mbuyamba is under contract at Volendam until June 2025 with an optional further year. The centre-half is also a key cog in the Palingboeren side at Kras Stadion. He started in all 28 of his Eredivisie appearances in 2022/23. The defender also recorded five goals and one assist.

Now, though, Celtic hope to lure Mbuyamba from Volendam over the final few weeks of the summer transfer window. Jones notes that Rodgers and the Bhoys now agree to make a bid for the Maastricht-born gem in the hope that he develops into a first-team star in Glasgow.

“I know Celtic have had reports on signing Mbuyamba,” Jones claimed. “But I had not heard things were developed enough to expect them to sign him until very recently.

“From what I’ve heard before, he was not quite at the level to be considered a priority. So, I think signing him now would suggest he is more of a developing player or someone that would be signed in the hope of him being a hit more than as an expectation.”

Celtic may have to fight Sampdoria to secure his services

Celtic may have to fight Sampdoria to secure Mbuyamba’s transfer from Volendam, though. De Telegraaf reported at the end of July that the Serie B side had drawn up a third bid worth €2.5m (£2m), plus a sell-on clause. They have also already agreed a contract with the player.

Mbuyamba even told Volendam technical director Jasper van Leeuwen that he wants to seal a switch to Sampdoria. Coach Andrea Pirlo has convinced the former Barcelona andChelsea youth defender to move to the Italian second tier. He only joined Volendam in August 2022.