Wed, Oct

WANTED MAN: Celtic weigh up transfer swoop for free-scoring AEK Athens forward Levi Garcia

CELTIC are keeping tabs on a prolific Greece-based striker as they ponder their squad improvements for next season.

The Hoops sent scouts to watch 25-year-old Trinidad and Tobago international Levi Garcia during Sunday's 3-1 win over Olympiakos.

And they watched him score a penalty, his 18th goal of the season, as AEK moved joint top of the Greek league with matches running out.

The powerful left-sided hitman - who stands 6ft tall - can operate through the middle or off the right - and he's also got six assists to his name.

Garcia cost £1.9m when he moved from Beitar Jerusalem to Greek football back in 2020, and has two years remaining on his current deal.

He's also a regular for his country, having scored eight goals in 36 appearances for Trinidad and Tobago.

The news came amid ongoing uncertainty over the future of winger Liel Abada.

The Israeli right winger cost just £3.6m when he arrived from Maccabi Petah Tikva last summer.

But he could being in four or five times that amid interest from Southampton, Ajax, Benfica and Crystal Palace.

Abada has found himself on the bench more often than not this campaign despite featuring 41 times in total for Ange Postecoglou's side.

The 21-year-old is under contract at the Hoops until 2026 after agreeing a five-year deal in 2021 but it looks likely that he will move on this summer.

It was suggested by Abada's former club's president last month that the player wanted to extend his current deal, but Celtic failed to reach an agreement.

The Maccabi Petah Tikva chief insisted that Abada now wants to leave Parkhead after negotiations fell short and claimed there's a 90 per cent it will be at the end of this season.

Manager Ange Postecoglou always keeps a keen eye on Greek football, having snapped up the likes of Georgios Giakoumakis shortly after his arrival at the club.

Like Giakoumakis, Garcia has a spell in Dutch football on his resume, having played at AZ Alkmaar before arriving in Israeli football.

Celtic have dealt with AEK Athens in the past, snapping up Greek goalkeeper Vasilis Barkas from there back in July 2020.

SOURCE: The Scottish Sun